The end result looks just like a sculpture. More accurately, a photograph of a sculpture. Photography is essential when sculpting with water, because water, of course, doesn’t hold shape. Weather these are sculptures on the photographs below, or simply photographs, we will let art historians agree upon. What we can say, looking at these one way or the other, is that Shinichi Maruyama has come really close to Zen. The inspiration for throwing water and other liquids in the air, and photographing them came to him while visiting Japanese Zen gardens. These are organized in such a way that is both revealing and concealing, sometimes easy to understand but often ponderous. In any case, they strive to to resemble the human spirit – complex issues are hidden behind simple forms. What we see in Mr. Maruyama’s work tends to go in the same direction. Not many things are as simple as water, but the same colorless substance in his work provokes thought through appreciation for beauty it arouses in the viewer.


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