“During the long rains in the Fifth Month, there is something very moving about a place with a pond. Between the dense irises, water-oats, and other plants one can see the green of the water; and the entire garden seems to be the same green colour. One stays there all day long, gazing in contemplation at the clouded sky⏤oh, how moving it is!”
Karensansui (枯山水), also known as the Japanese rock garden, is commonly referred to as a dry landscape. Although Taís Koshino gets inspiration for the digital simulation jardim in it, jardim is most definitely not dry. As far as the eye can see, it’s overflowing.
The white cube is no longer a cube; it’s a horizon of endless possibilities of making virtual gardens out of shapes and colors that seem to have come straight out of the artist's canvases. See, jardim is a digital simulation made from a very ingenious mechanism of generative art: while bringing up the fact that we’re living our daily experiences through digital devices, Taís urges us to take time to aimlessly build another experience, a very unique one. She’s worried about our sore bodies affected by the cloister of the past year. There’s no need to revel, it’s about silence. It’s about now.
In her artistic practice, Taís resorts to memories and personal thoughts in a way that resonates within most of us. The images made by her are fairly not complicated ⏤ there's something very familiar about the childlike line, a few bright colors and shapeless patches. In Batian, a short comic book written and drawn by Taís, the artist discourses on her grandmother ⏤ “batian” is a variant of obaasan (おばあさん), Japanese word for grandmother ⏤ Yasuko and how she’s her main link to her Japanese ancestry. Taís grew up calling her batian as Vó Emília, like the other members of her family. In Batian, Taís asks Vó Emília “what it was like to be called by another name all your life?”. She knows its forever going to be an unanswered question.
There’s this feeling in jardim of learning by oneself as one do when they're an infant who’s learning to take their first steps. There’s no wrong way to be in it. It’s all about being, just like some philosophical and aesthetic concepts of zen ⏤ a buddhist tradition that underlies many aspects of Japanese culture. As I get deeper into jardim, words written in The Pillow Book (994–1001) by the great Sei Shōnagon resound in my mind: “the pond is still there, but it's now uncared for and thick with pond weed”.