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There are many anomalous artifacts in this world that, when analyzed against the historical and geographical background of the places where they were discovered, offer no academic explanation as to why they were made or built. They are referred to as OOParts or out-of-place artifacts. Some of the more famous ones are the Geoglyphs of Nazca and the stone city of Machu Pichu in the Andes Mountains of Peru, and England’s Stonehenge, but there are many others that are unknown to most. Because these OOParts are shrouded in enigma outside of any historical and archeological context, people all over the world are allured to their mystique. Photographer Michaël Nambu is one such person.
Many OOParts are outliers. That can be said of the globe found at Ikarugadera Temple in Taishi Town, Hyogo Prefecture, which was reportedly made by the Prince Shotoku (574-622). What is so perplexing about it is that the concept of the Earth floating in space did not yet exist in Japan at that time. But, rather than argue the authenticity of each individual OOpart, Michaël simply prefers to wonder “what if they were all true?”
“Magallanica” is the name of an imaginary continent depicted on the aforementioned globe. As Michaël explains, “The Earth has been around for an astronomical amount of time from when it was born until the present. So, we shouldn't discount the possibility that there have been, over the millennia, many civilizations and histories unbeknownst to us that probably reached great heights only to vanish for some reason at some point in time. All sorts of images come to mind when I look at an oopart as an artifact of some ‘lost age’.”
OOParts might have been made for reasons that make absolutely no sense within modern-day trains of thought. If that is the case, what kind of celebrations and rituals did those people who disappeared from history perform back in their time? How did they dress and groom themselves for dancing and worship? Michaël’s work departs from there and culminates as a series of collaborative creations prepared in cohort with stylists and makeup artists. This exhibition brings you the entertaining portrayals of lost worlds conjured and created by Michaël with his colorful imagination and belief that civilizations on our planet come and go.