Mishiko was the sister of my grandfather. She fell ill during the war, doctors diagnosed poor hydration. In Japan, watermelon is a very popular fruit and holds much water. So her parents gave it to her regularly. But the diagnosis was wrong; it was a salt de ciency and she died shortly after.
Series: Hikari is a Japanese word meaning «the light» This work represents my compulsion to build and shape my own memory. To reconstitute some facts I haven’t expe- rienced myself, but have unconsciously in uenced me while growing up. My grandparents witnessed the war; survivors who fi- nally passed away and whose memories will soon be a part of history. Only once did we speak about their experiences during the war. They told me how illness can take away your sisters; the shame; the relief after the war; and the watermelons ... But after that night, we never talked about it again. As if my grandparents gave me their memories as a whisper through the air before allowing it to disappear from their minds. Somehow, I would say that I borrowed their memories. I use their stories as source of inspiration for my own testimony.
About David Favrod
Ever-present within David Favrod's photography is the question, "who am I?" Born in Japan to a Japanese mother and a Swiss father and raised in Switzerland, Favrod has consequently questioned his place in the world and strived to define his identity, ultimately shunned by a rejection for dual citizenship when he turned 18. Favrod was inspired to create his own version of Japan in Switzerland through his “Gaijin” series—literally, "foreigner"—that combines childhood memories with clichés of Japanese culture and stereotypical elements of Switzerland. In fictional scenes, like a self-portrait of the artist painted with Japanese koi fish scales and submerged in a bathtub, or depictions of supernatural creatures from Japanese folklore, Favrod explores the obstacles of his identity through narratives derived from dreams and readings, as well as a constant need to both question and escape.
b. 1982, Kobe, Japan, based in Switzerland