Artist Motoi Yamamoto presents his installation 'Labyrinth' composed of salt during Nuit Blanche 2014 at Hotel de Ville on October 4, 2014 in Paris, France. (Aurelien Meunier/Getty Images)
Artist Motoi Yamamoto works on his latest saltwork in the Robert Haywood Morrison Atrium at the Mint Museum Uptown on Monday, February 18, 2013, in Charlotte, North Carolina. (Jeff Siner/Charlotte Observer/MCT via Getty Images)
Artist Motoi Yamamoto works on his latest saltwork in the Robert Haywood Morrison Atrium at the Mint Museum Uptown in Charlotte, North Carolina, Monday, February 18, 2013. (Jeff Siner/Charlotte Observer/MCT via Getty Images)
What began as a tribute to his deceased sister grew into a life of its own. Artist Motoi Yamamoto has made a name for himself with his meticulously arranged salt installations. When you change your perspective, Yamamoto’s works take on an entirely different aesthetic. Up close, they appear to be merely a maze of seasoning. Each thin salt line represents pieces of memories and fragments of time. Take a step back and suddenly an organic spiral of shapes appears, embodying the spiral motif frequently used throughout Asian culture to depict all things related to death and the afterlife.
His most recent salt drawing, “Floating Garden,” was done in a 13th-century medieval castle in Southern France (above) and is on exhibit until November 30, 2016. It took him 45 hours over the course of five days to create. To learn more about Yamamoto and what drives him, watch the video at the bottom of this piece.