Posted by on January 26, 2018

Starting at the beginning of March, I will begin an expedition beyond anything I’ve dreamed of:

I will explore all of Japan’s 47 prefectures for 1 year by solo biking.

There is no set route or expectations. Only an exploration led by my own curiosity.

On the way, I will stop by passing, local children and ask them 1 question: “What are you deeply curious about?” and collect their answers on papers stored in a bottle on my bike-rack.

I hope to assemble these collected curiosities into an art piece for the public in Japan.

You can follow my adventures (and misadventures) on my blog. Even better, sign up on the form to the right to get first updates on my journey!

 

WHY A CYCLE?

 

Cycling is only the means for my expedition, not its reason.

My strongest memories of childhood have one thing in common: adventure.

In my home’s back-garden or at school, I would often be found going on made-up adventures behind bushes, or reading travel books about great explorers.

I vividly remember the realization that there were still unexplored places on earth: it was a deep, enveloping feeling of wonder.

I sat by a computer, opened an empty Word document , and wrote, “Unexplored Places” at the top, because of course, that was where I would be going to one day.

I never got beyond that heading.

But in my heart, the wonder has always remained, and many years later, it is a call I am finally heeding.

That is why I am going cycling through Japan.

 

WHY JAPAN?

 

My first exposure to Japan was quite random.

I spent 2 years with my close friend’s Tibetan grandmother, and having no common language, we would watch her favourite TV show in the mornings: NHK world documentaries about Japan.

The intrigue I felt of the country was instant.

Not only did I feel a deep interest to know more about the people, culture, and history, but I felt an admiration and connection to it.

May I go so far as to say a soulful connection.

Unable to travel to Japan, I immersed myself through media, music, and books.

The more I explored, the more curious and connected I felt. It was a calling that screamed to me.

When I was able to travel, my destination was obvious.

 

WHY CHILDREN’S CURIOSITIES?

 

Curiosity is what drove humans forward.

And it is what should drive children’s education forward. An area that I am deeply interested in.

I hope that by collecting children’s curiosities and passingly encouraging them to pursue them, children will give thought to what deeply interests them and follow the path it takes them down.

I hope to raise awareness on a wider scale too: by creating an art piece for the public with all the collected curiosities at the end of the year-long journey.

My hope is to expand on this project later.

Any ideas or collaborations are very welcome. Please contact me at ivamekki1@gmail.com

 

 

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