Art Project

Consecration of 1000 years votive picture of horse

Miki Momma

<Open Call Project SOCIAL DIVE>

The hero Heishomon is worshipped across shrines of Tokyo. Still popular to this day and carrying over a thousand legends across Japan, he is a hero who rose bravely to fight for people in poverty. In fact, there is a festival held every year involving a horse battle in Fukushima Prefecture’s Soma coast, the only region that practices horse chasing. According to legend, the region’s feudal lord, Soma Nakamura, inherited the position of Heishomon.

Born in Soma, Fukushima Prefecture, and holding an atlier there, Miki Momma has been interviewing and drawing contemporary equestrians. For the biennale, the artist will use the method of traditional ink painting to create almost life sized installations of herds of horses galloping through indoor and outdoor spaces across sites in Tokyo with ties to Heishomon.

Going beyond eternity, viewers will re-live how heroes trained with horse chasing battles for the sake of faith and survival.

(As of March 2020)

1: Heishomon sent toward the river in battle, crosses a wave created by the Big Dipper and Northern Star, the artwork recreates the legendary victory. It is said he battled along the lower reaches of the Tonegawa River that flows close to the venue. Photo by Shinya Kogure
2: “The horse that crosses the river from 1,000 years ago” 2017, Sendai Mediatheque, Photo by Tsutomu Koiwa
3: “Route 99 months” 2019, Arts Maebashi, Cooperation: TURNER COLOUR WORKS LTD.


Miki Momma (Artist)

Born in Soma City, Fukushima Prefecture, in 1981. In 2005, she graduated from the Fine Arts Department of Tokyo Zokei University, where she majored in painting. From 2005 to 2007, she went to China to study at the China Academy of Art and the China Central Academy of Fine Art. During her stay, she travelled throughout China while continuing to produce work before returning to Japan. In 2013, she resumed her creative activities, which had been disrupted by the Great East Japan Earthquake. Until spring of this year (2020), she had continued to travel back and forth every month between Tokyo and Soma City where the railway is closed in order to circumvent the nuclear power plant while continuing her work. Major exhibitions include OpenStudio2019 (Art Factory Jonanjima, 2019), The Ongoing Dialogue (Yokohama Civic Art Gallery, 2019), Art Meets 06 MOMMA Miki/yang 02 (Arts Maebashi, 2019), AVAT×Turnaround Exchange Exhibition (FreeS Art Space, 2019), OpenStudio2018 (Art Factory Jonanjima, 2018), VOCA2018 (The Ueno Royal Museum, 2018), Nice To Meet You ARTECHNIK (Sendai Mediatheque, 2017), The Kabukicho Art Project (Inari-Kiou Jinja Shrine, 2016), The Art Works After 3.11. Fukushima (Fukushima Prefectural Museum of Art, 2016), and her solo exhibition Route (Gallery Natsuka, 2015). She won the Grand Prize in the Acryl Gouache Biennale 2018.

Art Project