田島征三は半世紀にわたる創作活動の中で、絵本をはじめ木の実や自然物を使った壮大なアート作品を展開してきました。幼少期を自然豊かな高知県で暮らし、この時の原体験は、今も創作の根になっています。1969年、絵本『ちからたろう』にて第２回BIB世界絵本原画展金のりんご賞で世界的に注目を集めました。その後、東京都西多摩郡日の出村（現日の出町）に移り住み、ヤギやチャボを飼い畑を耕す生活をしながら、絵本などの創作を続けます。絵本『ふきまんぶく』『とべバッタ』や、『ほら いしころがおっこちたよ ね、わすれようよ』などが誕生しました。1990年代は日の出巨大ゴミ処分場建設反対運動に奔走しますが、胃癌を発症し転地療法のため伊豆高原に移住してからは、木の実を使った作品や絵本『ガオ』『モクレンおじさん』を作り出します。木の実や流木などによる作品群を全国で発表し、2009年、「鉢＆田島征三 絵本と木の実の美術館」が開館します。「瀬戸内国際芸術祭」では、ハンセン病療養地の大島で作品を展開。日中韓平和絵本、ラオスの「森の絵本」プロジェクトなど、現在も精力的に創作が続けられています。
TASHIMA Seizo has been creating splendid works from picture books to artworks created from natural materials such as tree nuts in his creative activities for half a century. He spent his boyhood in the abundant nature in Kochi prefecture which still supports roots to his creative activity. He gained international reputation after receiving the Golden Apples Award in the 2nd Biennale of Illustrations Bratislava (BIB) for his picture book “Strongman Taro (Chikarataro)” in 1969. Later he moved to Hinode village (currently called Hinode town) in the west Tama-gun, Tokyo and continued his creative activity including publishing picture books as he lived with goats and bantams and cultivated a field. “Fukimanbuku the Girl and the Flowers (Fukimanbuku)”, “Fly, Grasshopper! (Tobe Batta)”, “Drop a Stone and Forget (Hora Ishikoroga Okkochitayo Ne Wasureyoyo)” were published during his time in Hinode. While he devoted his energy to the protest of the construction of a huge dumping site in Hinode in 1990s, he moved to Izukogen as a part of a relocation therapy for a gastric cancer and started to create artworks using tree nuts as well as published picture books such as “Roar! (Gao)” and “Mr. Magnolia (Mokuren Ojisan)”. He presented those artworks made of tree nuts and drift woods across Japan and opened “Hachi & Tashima Seizo Museum of Picture Book Art” in 2009. He has continued to pursue his creative activities in recent years including developing artworks in Oshima which was once leprosy sanatorium for the Setouchi Triennale, publishing a picture book for peace amongst China, South Korea and Japan and engaging with a “forest picture book” project in Laos.
Photo by Tsuzuki Kenji