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Osamu Naruse|成瀬治

ミニマルな作品に宿る、作家の純粋さ

◆自前の工房兼住居
木更津の新興住宅地から少し走ると、木の生い茂る小高い場所に、成瀬の工房兼住居がある。特段これといったカルチャーがないこと、静かで落ち着いた環境が決め手となり、2年前に川崎からこの地へ移り住んだ。倉庫を改装し、金属加工をするための工場をこしらえた。中には1,000tの鉄材をも持ち上げることができるリフトやガスボンベ、切断機、溶接機といった重機が並ぶ。匙や器などの小さな作品から建築物まで幅広く手がける成瀬にとって、大概のものが制作できる規模の設備は必需だ。隣接する小屋には木工作業を行うための工房を、2階には木の温もりが心地よいシンプルな1ルーム、作家の住居がある。作業場も住居も、すべて自身が手作業で作り上げた。

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◆素材と対峙すること
木工の道に入り、家具職人としてスタートした成瀬は、その製作の幅を広げるため、鉄工所に勤務し鉄を扱うようになる。椅子から照明器具、建造物まで幅広く手がけるようになった。その後、益子への移住をきっかけに陶器市への出店を誘われ、そこから自身の作家としての活動がスタート。最初は自分が作りたいものが分からずもがき苦しんだ。出店を重ねていく中で作家仲間と出会い、彼らの常に実験と研究を重ねる姿勢に刺激をもらった。工具と電力を必要とする金属加工をメインにやってきたが、最近では敢えてアナログに、素材集めや素材の加工から携わることで、作品のさらなる可能性を模索している。金属の器づくりでは、アルミをアルカリで反応させることで独特のマットで柔らかい風合いを引き出すなど、ひとつひとつの素材と向き合いながら、その素材の持つ性質を長短併せて引き出すことを心がけている。

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◆人を映すものづくり
成瀬の作品は、ミニマルで洗練された佇まいの中に、どこか有機的な柔らかさや繊細さを持ち合わせる。ともすれば無機質になりがちな、シンプルな曲線と素材の組み合わせで作られる作品も、成瀬の手にかかると表情をまとい、観る者との間に共鳴のようなものが生まれる。作品は人を映すと言われるように、人一倍謙虚で優しく、純粋な彼のパーソナリティがその作品にも表れているのだろう。決して声高に主張はしないが、静かに優しく、それでいて確かな存在感を放ちながらそっと寄り添う。作ることで自分を知ることができる、と成瀬は言う。幼少期は自分と向き合うことが苦手で、ものを作ることを通じて唯一、自分が好きなものややりたいことを発見することができた。今でもそのスタンスは変わらず、まだ見たことのない自分、知らない自分を掘り起こすような感覚でものづくりに向き合う。彼にとってのものづくりとは、自分自身との対峙の積み重ねなのだ。

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<略歴>
1984 東京都に生まれる。
    岐阜県高山市にて木工家具を学んだのち鉄工所に勤務する。
2013 益子に移住し作家活動を始める。現在千葉を拠点に製作を行う。

The Genuineness of the Artist that Dwells in Minimal Works

◆ A Self-built Studio and Residence
Naruse’s studio and residence can be found on a slightly elevated hill with a rich growth of trees, situated a short drive away from Kisarazu’s emerging residential area. The lack of a distinct culture, as well as the quiet and calm environment had been decisive factors for him moving to this area two years ago from Kawasaki. Naruse renovated an existing warehouse to create his metalworking studio filled with various heavy equipment including lifts, gas cylinders, cutting machines, and welding machines that can lift up to 1,000 tons of iron material. For Naruse, whose diverse practice ranges from the creation of small works such as spoons and vessels to architectural structures, there was a need to prepare a series of equipment that would allow him to produce most things. The adjacent cabin serves as a workshop for woodworking, while the artist’s residence –a simple open-plan room with a warm and comfortable wooden feel– is situated on the second floor. Both the workspace and residence had been built by the artist’s own hand.

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◆ Confronting the Materials
Having entered the world of woodworking, Naruse began his career as a furniture craftsman. In order to expand the scope of his practice however, he came to commence work at an ironworks where he started working with metal, producing a wide range of things from chairs to lighting fixtures, and even buildings. Thereafter he moved to Mashiko and was invited to open shop in the local pottery market, which led him to pursue his own artistic practice. At first he found himself struggling, not knowing exactly what it was that he wished to create. As he continued to participate in the market, he encountered fellow artists and was inspired by their attitude of constant experimentation and research. Although Naruse mainly engaged in metalworking that required tools and electricity, recently he has been exploring further possibilities for his work by purposefully taking a more analog approach, also involving himself in the collecting of materials and their processing. For the production of his metal vessels, he creates a distinctly matte yet soft texture by enabling aluminum to react with alkali. Through intimately confronting each and every material, he attempts to bring out both the pros and cons of their inherent nature and properties.

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◆ A Practice that Reflects the Artist’s Personality
Despite their minimal and sophisticated appearance, Naruse’s works permeate with a certain organic softness and delicacy. Works created through a combination of simple curves and materials which tend to present themselves as inorganic, come to embrace an air of personality at the hands of the artist, evoking a resonance of sorts with viewers. As it is often said that works reflect those that create them, Naruse’s works serve to convey his humble, gentle, and genuine personality. Although not making an overt statement, they harbor a sense of calm and gentleness, ruminating with a certain presence and quietly lying close to the lives of the people who cherish them. Naruse mentions that he can become acquainted with himself through creating. Having not been good at dealing with himself as a child, it was only through making things that he was able to discover what he truly liked or wanted to do. This stance remains unchanged to this day, as he engages in his artistic practice in a manner as if trying to unearth yet to bee seen or undiscovered aspects of himself. For Naruse, the act of creating is a continuous process of confronting his very own self.

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Born in Tokyo, 1984.
Worked at an ironworks after having studied woodcraft furniture in Takayama, Gifu Prefecture. Began pursuing his artistic practice after moving to Mashiko in 2013. Currently lives and works in Chiba.