'Obon', an ongoing public art project by Miya Ando.
There is also Obon, a site-specific series that pays homage to the ancient Japanese ceremony of the same name. A annual ritual of remembrance, descendants of visiting spirits guide their deceased ancestors back to the netherworld by floating small paper boats containing lit candles. Ando initiated the latest edition last year, in collaboration with the Fist Art Foundation in Puerto Rico. Consisting of a thousand Bodhi leaf skeletons, each fragile entity was painstakingly hand-painted with phosphorescence and resin, and cast afloat on a pond. The leaves absorbed sunlight during the day, emitting an otherworldly glow later that evening when the showcase opened, allowing the haunting work to achieve a temporal synergy with its physical environment. “I wanted to connect this notion of memory together with the naturally occurring bioluminescence which Puerto Rico is known for,” says Ando. - Adele Chong, Surface Asia Magazine