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Home » Publications » Catalogue Excerpts » Bodies in Translation: Age and Creativity

Bodies in Translation: Age and Creativity

MJ Sakurai

Artist Biography
MJ (Mary Jean) Sakurai completed a BA in Criminology at the University of California, Berkeley, in the 1960s. In subsequent decades she worked in a variety of administrative and clerical positions, including at the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design in the 1970s. Since 1991 she has been involved in a wide array of community-based activities with Nova Scotian organizations such as Atlantic/Halifax Jazz Festival and JazzEast Music Education Gala, Atlantic Fringe, Kinetic Studio, GraineryFood Coop, Raging Grannies, Scotia Festival of Music, Mahone Bay Refugee Sponsorship Group, and East Coast Tango Society. She also undertakes freelance editorial work.

In 2008 Sakurai received a Media Arts Scholarship from the Centre for Art Tapes, Halifax, and produced the six-minute video Vintage Plumbing and Wiring. The artist lives in Mahone Bay, Nova Scotia.

Artist Statement
Seventy-plus years of existence: breathing, listening, feeling, observing and thinking with varying degrees of depth, clarity and success. Forty-plus years among the working poor as a single parent of two daughters (now in their second age) and solo. Retired in 2012 to Mahone Bay and now occupied with an array of voluntary cultural and physical activities. With exception of bout of Lyme disease in 2015, enjoying excellent health. Looking forward with my crone and geezer pals to older age before being gathered in.

As we are sensual beings, sexuality is a part of vital healthy aging. Our plumbing for intimate connection may be functional for longer than generally recognized, and poignant couplings have always been possible through our wiring. Surely, as life force sensual energy conducted by our wiring continues to manifest after we expire. This is a six-minute video (interlaced, colour, monaural audio) with selected images of antique knob and tube wiring, plumbing fixtures and piping, and vintage electrical equipment for woodworking, blacksmithing and metal shop interlaid with body images. The voiceover addresses some basic nuts and bolts issues of sensuality in our third age.

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