HASEGAWA | 長谷川

The name Hasegawa is Japanese for ‘long valley river’. It does not take a lot of imagination to see a flowing river in the Kanji symbol for gawa 川. From this letter my Japanese ancestors have derived the family crest which you find with me today.

In Japanese Buddhism Water represents the fluid, flowing, formless things in the world. Outside of the obvious example of rivers and lakes, plants are also categorised under Water, as they adapt to their environment, growing and changing according to the direction of the sun and the changing seasons. Water can be associated with mental and emotional tendencies towards adaptation and change; emotion, flexibility, suppleness, and resilience. In many ancient civilisations Water was equivalent to Life, as there is no life without water. The ancient Egyptians knew this better than any other, revering the Nile and building their cities along it and the fertile soil it provided. Water is sometimes also seen as a symbol for Destiny, as it has no control over the direction in which it flows, and even so, the largest rocks get eroded down in its path.

 
 
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 NAOMI HASEGAWA

Born in The Netherlands of Spanish and German mother and a Japanese father, I have been creating since I could hold a pen. Throughout my childhood years my main interest have been the Fine Arts, but I found joy in any form of creation, be it drawing, painting, sewing (toys at an earlier age, my own clothes at a later stage) and inventing all kinds of craft projects from whatever interesting-looking trash I came across.

As I matured, those creative impulses only spread wider, covering areas of photography, film, writing, cooking, branding and digital creativity. Creativity is boundless in its use. But some areas it quietly wanders into like a little glistening creek, and other areas offer it the space and impulse for a true waterfall to appear.

In my life I have experienced many forms of this flowing water, and how, in the years in which I was ill, it was down to the tiny yet insistent drops of a leaky tap. As I started to regain some energy, I gained enough strength to turn open this tap and from it I managed to get enough water to sail it, instead of walking on the dry land. Where is this boat going, you ask? Where ever this river takes me.