Lieven Martens
In Hirokazu-San's Office, Dried Tea Leaves Are Waiting to Speak (Anecdote)
Edições CN
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Cardboard sleeve
Estimated shipping on May 29th 2024
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1Matter Flows I 2:40
2Matter Flows II 4:05
3Matter Flows III 4:42
4Matter Flows IV 5:43
5Matter Flows V 4:52
6Matter Flows VI 3:29
7Matter Flows VII 3:56

All sounds recorded inside Ujikoen’s tea factory in Kizugawa and in the tea fields - some are deserted - in the surrounding mountains.

We are inside the office of Hirokazu-San, the director of Ujikoen. Ujikoen is a historical tea company based in Kizugawa near Kyoto.

There’s four of us Kojima Hirokazu : director of the tea company Kazuki Tomita : a translator hired for our project Floris Vanhoof : multimedia artist Lieven Martens : sound recordist

In this office Hirokazu-San tastes and slurps tea every day. Carefully he boils the water, selects the leaves, tastes the harvest, sip. Rounding up to about 300.000 sips - or more? - during his years studying for, and being a, teamaster.

He blends with his tongue. Carefully combining different leaves from different soils. I had no idea they blended tea in this Geuze/Champagne manner.

Our sounding slurping becomes a factory machine. His laughter is a bird call. The ringle of tableware as a polyrhythm. The digital chimes flowing over the village, a motif. The bell from the surrounding temple cuts the wind. And during the observation in the mountains, an artist forgets his shoes, what is celebrated by horseflies.

The sounds lead our thoughts to various directions. As a magical realistic play of a few people sitting in an office space.

I walk outside the factory building. I walk around it. A faint smell of cat pee. The gravel makes sound under my sandals. I look up and see an airplane carefully drawing a straight line in the sky.

A memory comes with every taste. It will be a blend.

This story takes place in the Uji region where the highest standard tea leaves are grown. Because of the mist, the air, the blue mountains, the people, … And in this particular office, in this factor building, in this village. I think about and follow every sound. To what was and where it goes.