Astonishing installations made of salt conjure a sense of endless wandering and ephemerality at once.

Japanese artist Motoi Yamamoto has elected salt as medium for his art. After the death of his sister, he began working with the material toi keep her memory alive; in Japanese culture, salt is a symbol of purification and mourning.

Using salt, Yamamoto builds crumbling walls, deceiving tunnels and complex arabesques. In more recent years, he has focused his practice into mind-blowing site-specific installations. He literally draws with salt, creating abstract images reminiscent of typhoons and hurricanes. The process is time-consuming and highly meditative, resembling the creation of mandalas. With their intricate elegance and powerful grace, the resulting works convey both intensity and evanescence.

In September the traveling exhibition Return to the Sea: Saltwork will be on show at Laband Art Gallery in Los Angeles. The title Return to the Sea also refers to the dismantling of Yamamoto's pieces, when the salt will be collected and returned to the sea. The exhibition runs from 8 September to 8 December.

Images courtesy of Motoi Yamamoto.

Laband Art Gallery

Loyola Marymount University
1 Loyola Marymount University Drive
Los Angeles