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In IBASHO’s bookshop there will be a small exhibition of works by Dutch photographer Ilse Leenders. She will show works from her series ‘Shindai’ which is a reference to the inspired nature. The word Shindai is derived from the Kojiki, which is an early Japanese chronicle of myths, legends, hymns, genealogies, oral traditions, and semi-historical concerning the origin of the Japanese archipelago and which dates back to a time when people and gods walked the earth together.

Empathy, respect, honour, a nurturing nature, ethics, a chivalrous attitude, a strong spirit, all these things were part of nature itself. From the traditional view of nature, experienced in Shintoism, universal entities ‘Kami’ are invited to settle in the vicinity and thus to ensoul it. Kami can be found in, for example, the water, the forest, a mountain, but also in humans. During an artist-in-residence at Akiyoshidai International Artist Village in Yamaguchi prefecture, Leenders tried to open herself to the awareness of the divine nature and the people around her. By wandering in this environment with appreciation of all precious aspects of life and with attention to everyone, she has tried to experience and to transform this inspiration into images.

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