As a third-generation calligrapher, I started learning “sho-do” (Japanese calligraphy) at the age of five. Since then, I have never forgotten the essential teachings about “shu (守) – ha (破) - ri （離）”.
I first practiced simple strokes and fundamental techniques for long years during the “shu” stage, learning the basics faithfully, protecting and respecting what has been passed down from ancient times. Then I stepped into the next stage of “ha” and broke with the traditions and teachings I had mastered. I made tremendous efforts afterwards to find and establish my original way in reaching the last stage of “ri”. Having built a solid foundation of traditional techniques and knowledge, and then making efforts to break with, I feel I could transcend all of them comprehensively. That is why now I am able to create, write and draw my works of calligraphy spontaneously without thinking. My own style of calligraphy, sometimes with poems and drawings, was established to this end.
I believe the figures of letters were formed and invented in order to communicate the minds of people beyond space and time. My aim as a calligrapher is to express and identify with the original pure heart of our ancestors, and to bring beautiful letters to life in this world we live in today.
I hope you enjoy my works, and I would be very happy if you could feel something from the letters, poems and drawings that I create.
In 2009, Byakko Kashiwagi started to create a series of works under the theme of Kumano Kodo pilgrimage route, a World Heritage site. In 2014, she held a personal exhibition “TEN TO CHI” (Heaven and the Earth), a calligraphic pilgrim dedicated to Kumano”. And in 2015 and 2016, the exhibition toured to Kumano, Ise and two venues in Tokyo.
She continues to travel to fields and mountains of the area and receive the messages from the land, and creates calligraphic works by poems and ink painting.
In the beginning
there were countless millennia of days and nights
forever the time passed
then, from the depth of the earth, through the sea
in the midst of the murmur of life
an unknown tree of vigor
grew high to the sky
ensiform branches piercing heaven like swords
Among the branches, emerged millions of butterflies
flying off the with the wind
their bright amber wings fluttering
and gliding over the ocean of conflict and love
When the butterflies reached the harbor of calm
still glowing, they sank to the abyssal depth of the sea
with ephemeral memories of feeble but worldly joys
with affectionate caresses
carrying the eternal message of hope
to join those proudly remembered souls
in the deep blue
sleeping in the silent peace