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Stories of Roots: food to connect

"I use food as my art tool to connect people. Omusubi is a rice ball filled with different ingredients. Omusubi is a canvas, a canvas for people to explore their stories. My project is called ‘Stories of Roots (SoR)’. It is socially-engaged-art against racism."

Miyu Yamamoto, iMAE ArtEZ
Miyu Yamamoto, iMAE
“Go back to your country!”, I was said by my classmates when I was 12 years old. But I don’t know where ‘my country’ is...
Miyu Yamamoto

"I was born in Japan and raised by Korean parents. I am the third generation of Zainichi Korean. Do we have to have only one country as ‘your country’? I am Japanese but I also have Korean roots. Does the nationality matter? What makes what differences? Since then, my urge has been to make the society more open for diversity, have different perspectives."

Stories of Roots (SoR)

Stories of Roots (SoR)

"Stories of roots is where people meet other people. Through Omusubi, you re-look at yourself and our world with different perspectives. For my graduation project, I worked with 5 teenagers from an Islamic community in Arnhem. We explored our stories by sensory experience. Drawing, smelling, touching, eating, or talking activates your sensation. Through those activities, we empathize each other, understand each other. Empathy is the key, key for the “shift”. The shift makes the change. This is the embodiment and the empathic pedagogy. We made Omusubi products to bring their stories to others. Omusubi is a mediator between different groups of people."

"I believe knowing people’s stories enables us to re-humanize. Stories tell you who you are, who they are. As the stories are different in everyone, the recipe is never the same."

Stories of Roots (SoR)

"iMAE gave me new and wider perspectives and ways towards art, social change, and critical pedagogy, and influenced me to see more different types of art practice in social change rather than 'economy-oriented' social change. I now work with food as my art tool, which I have discovered during iMAE. I also started to design and offer some educational programs based on critical pedagogy, in which students use their body/mind, sensation and experience socially engaged art, for schools in Japan. iMAE offered rich experience and practice that I can implement soon after graduation. Lastly and most importantly, iMAE made me to be authentic, to be able to follow the flow, and to be present at the environment, with the people, and the time for my worklife. Now, my worklife is more connected with others and myself."

Do you want to 'taste' Stories of Roots? To see more details, visit the Stories of Roots website.