More than 50,000 keys are suspended from a ceiling in the immersive art installation The Key in the Hand by Japanese artist Chiharu Shiota. The keys, each suspended by red thread, were provided by donors from all over the world. The Key in the Hand is on display through November 22, 2015 at the Japan Pavilion of the 56th Venice Biennale.
Keys are familiar and very valuable things that protect important people and spaces in our lives. They also inspire us to open the door to unknown worlds. With these thoughts in mind, in this new installation I would like to use keys provided by the general public that are imbued with various recollections and memories that have accumulated over a long period of daily use. As I create the work in the space, the memories of everyone who provides me with their keys will overlap with my own memories for the first time. These overlapping memories will in turn combine with those of the people from all over the world who come to see the biennale, giving them a chance to communicate in a new way and better understand each other’s feelings.