02 Nov '17, 11am

Concept of "Ma" is at the heart of Japanese minimalism

Concept of "Ma" is at the heart of Japanese minimalism

The embrace of negative space is celebrated in everything from home décor and flower arranging to poetry and all aspects of Japanese daily life. I’ve always loved the term horror vacuii from the Latin “fear of emptiness” – a turn of phrase that turns clutter into a "horror." The term is used in the visual art and design worlds and is often associated with Italian art and literature critic, Mario Praz, who used it to describe the fussy suffocating chaos of the Victorian interior. Heaven forbid there should be an inch of space not overwhelmed by pattern, heavy furniture, ferns and gewgaws! No wonder Victorian women were always fainting. But in Japan, the go-to aesthetic could easily be called amor vacuii … a love of emptiness, because that’s what fuels the cultural concept known as Ma. Ma (pronounced "maah") is a celebration of not things, but the space between them. It is a...

Full article: https://www.treehugger.com/culture/cultural-concept-ma-he...

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