With hundreds of hours of patience and thousands of pounds of salt, Japanese artist Motoi Yamamoto draws vast mazes on smooth floors. Like painting with an hourglass, he lets salt flow from a plastic bottle normally used for machine oil, slowly drawing what he calls his “Labyrinths.”
Yamamoto began drawing with salt, a traditional Japanese symbol of mourning and purification, after his sister died of brain cancer more than a decade ago. His works convey a sense of eternity, while also being temporal in nature. Often, on completion of a showing observers participate in ceremoniously wiping away the delicately created lines. After his Cologne show, viewers were asked to re-distribute the salt where they wished, that it might contribute to new life.