The feedback of doing the volunteering job

I was to be the volunteer helping different artists in KOEBI about 15 days. I did the different work, experienced the new life and communicated with other volunteers with different cultural backgrounds in here every day.

This was my first day in Takamastu. When I got to the Takamastu station by airport shuttle bus, Yoko and Michi met me at the station holding the board that was written my name, and they lead me to the office showing me some details about the position of dormitory, the public bath and some other places like supermarket.

The first day I went to Shodoshima to drive away crop-eating insects, this is the traditional event in Shodoshima island

This was the ticket to Shodoshima.

When I got off the ferry, the working staff picked me up to join the event together. At first, we went the temple to make the best wishes for our family members then assembled at the square to join the event in the evening.

We walked crossing a rice field on a narrow path, swinging large burning torches to drive away the crop-eating insects. This was my first time to join the event like that, I felt that activity was so organized, everybody was responsible for the different jobs and I was so joyful to meet the working staff and local citizen.

Followed the schedule, I need go to Ogigima to help the artist do the cleaning job. The artist do the work with wood, so we went the beach to pick up some branches which can be used in the art work, and cut them by the equipped machine, then washed them and put them under the sunshine, lastly need to do the art work with them.

This is the artist.

The artist even taught us how to do the artwork with some equipment. This was also my first time to do the work with branches, I feel so excited, even though I could not speak Japanese, the artist taught us step by step and demonstrated slowly.

The artist told us how to add the emotion to those branches.

This was my work. ☺

Back to the that day, I got the sunburnt, but I still thought it was worthwhile to try something new related to the art work, coz I realized that there were different ways to express the feeling through art.

DAY 3 (day off)
It was my first day off, but I met the biggest sport competition in Takamastu. It was so lucky.

This is the sport competition.

At that day, Yoko (the working staff) help me made the reservation to buy some old books in second-hand bookstore. With the help of Yoko, I met the second-hand book seller who was so welcome and I bought two old books related to design. So excited, thanks for the Yoko help.

The second-hand bookstore.

I went to the Shodoshima by the ferry again with two Japanese volunteers. This time, we need help the artist who came from Taiwan and the art work was exhibited near the beach. We worked with Taiwan volunteering team together in the hot summer day. That was a huge task to move the art work which was made by the plaster and fixed it in the right position. But with the help of local citizens , we were working in the great process, they were so nice and friendly.

The lunch time.

At first, I did not expect to have such huge work, but when we finished it, felt so great honor because I did something that was beyond my limition and that really inspired me.

When I was back to the dormitory, I met a bunch of friends who came from Hong Kong, they were so friendly and kind. In the later life, we will do the volunteering work together.

I was with some friends who came from Hong Kong to go to Teshima helping the Australian artists. With the introduction of the artists, they usually created the artwork by food. They prefer to use seaweed to describe the local citizens’ lives in Teshima. Actually, we did the art work by sewing the seaweed indoors in a whole day, at the beginning, I felt so excited to do that, but during the whole day we were doing the same work repeatedly, we felt a little bit bored. However, at the end of working day, it was so amazed to see the artwork doing by ourselves.

Doing the art work together.

Back to the Shodoshima again to finish the art work with Taiwan artist and did the cleaning work as well. After lunch, all volunteers and the artists watched the artwork by the high speedboat in the center of the see. Actually, when I saw the artwork in different distances, I felt different. In the short distance, I focused the details of varied plaster human trying to understand each meanings, however, in the long distance, I pretended myself as a visitor to come to Shodoshima at the first time, the different plaster humans seem protected the island greatly.

But a few days later , it was so sad to hear that the part of artwork was ruined by the heavy raining.

The local citizens, the volunteer from KOEBI and the volunteering team from Taiwan.

I was told to be back to Teshima helping another artwork in the forest. The working staff told us that there were many mosquitoes, it was better to wear the long shirt and long pant in advance. They prepared all things like the liquid to drive away mosquitoes and the ice water, so we did not worry about that.

The work that we need to separate different types and modes of the artwork.

During the lunch break, we met the marvelous scenery.

At that day, the working place was near Teshima museum, so the working staff drove to that place to have a look after working. Thank you so much.

In the evening, we cooked dishes together, that was so nice to eat together and shared the feeling together.

Day 8 (day off)
The second day off, we went to Naoshima to see more artworks and some museums.

Day 9
It was my great opportunity to go to Oshima doing the cleaning work. Before heading to the Oshima, I was told that some leprosy patients living in here and we need to help the local citizen doing the cleaning things. When we were at that place, the main working staff explained the artworks in here and some story about the leprosy patients. It was my better chance to know the patient better.

Doing the volunteering job in here could find the your mind. it was quiet and peaceful.

In the morning, we did the cleaning work in here, the working staff explained the concept of the artwork.

This was the ocean museum in Oshima.

In the afternoon, we cleaned wood branches in order to do the artwork.

In the evening, we headed to the office having a meeting. When we were back to our dormitory, Yoko have already cooked the dinner that was curry with vegetables, that was sooooooo tasty. Enjoy that day very much.

DAY 10
I should go to Uno to help the artist do the cleaning job coz his artwork was almost finished. After he show the picture and explained his concept of the artwork, I realized that the nature is the true resource to inspire artists’ ideas. He told us the concept of his outdoor artwork, he thought about the nature could ruin his artwork first and show the artwork after ruin.

This is UNO JR station.

DAY 11
I went to the Tashima again to do the packaging job for the Australian artist. Those food was all made by the local citizens and will be sold in the vending machine during the art festival in summer season.

DAY 12 day- off

Day 13
I went to the office to drew the box of selling postcards. After doing the volunteering job in here, I thought they played great important role in the art festival, so I drew the all working staff in the KOEBI to let the visitor know the roles they played.

DAY 14
That was my last day to do the volunteering job. I need help the artist from the Thailand to finish the Takamastu Asia market.

Back to the dormitory, we also ate together, that was my favorite thing during each day. Thanks for the gift from Shoko.

After doing the volunteering work in here, I met a lot of people who came from the different cultural backgrounds and some friendly local citizens. We did the job together and also learned from each other. If I had the opportunity, I would go to Takamastu again to watch the completed artworks in this festival. Thanks for the help from KOEBI working staff,
thank u so much.

Molly Zhou





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