The phrase ‘miegakari’ relates to a notion of an object hovering between visible and invisible but present within the senses of the viewer. This term is often used in Japanese garden design practice to create a suggestive atmosphere for a space. Between June and October 2001 internationally known glass artist Keiko Mukaide and Japanese landscape architect Tokiko Furuuchi used glass, light, sound and mist to explore this concept at The Hill House in Helensburgh.
The Hill House, built by Charles Rennie Mackintosh and now in the care of the National Trust for Scotland, formed an outstanding environment to host the work. The view from the drawing room is typical of the perspective design techniques used within Japanese woodcuts. The horizontal lines produced by the garden hedges overlap, leading the spectator’s eyes to the hills and the Clyde in the distance. Using this method of controlling the perspective as a starting point Keiko and Tokiko created a three-part work from glass, light, sound and mist to explore the concept of ‘miegakari’ in a British context. The shimmering reflections of dichroic glass reflected on the ceiling of the drawing room from just outside the window will lead the eye to a series of freestanding curved glass panels. Mist curled in the distance to suggest a magical confluence of land and the sea beyond. Such resonances perpetuate the original design philosophy of the garden extending the sea.