There is a narrow alleyway in front of my house in Jakarta. All sorts of street vendors come and go throughout the day in this alleyway. Vendors sell porridge and bread for early morning, and noodles and soups for lunch.
The street vendors of Nasi Goreng move around the area until three in the morning. Not only are there food stalls, but also stalls for daily items, and stalls full of toys, and occasionally a clothing repair stall carrying a sewing machine.
These street stalls are called KAKILIMA in Indonesian.
KAKI means leg, LIMA is five in number. Direct translation is “FIVE LEGS”. I was wondering why they call street stalls “FIVE LEGS”. Recently, it occurred to me and I asked a local friend, and the response was this.
“Two wheels are for moving, one stopper for stopping and securing the stall, the other two are the vendor’s legs.”
Laughing at their idea of counting everything and calling them “legs”, it also made me realize that “a person” was also considered as part of the essential material condition together with the wheels and the stopper as three elements that keep the stall self-supported.
“FIVE LEGS” simply describes three components of street stalls. First is movement. A stall traveling through a city. Second is pause. Randomly parking and setting up a place. Third is people. Characteristics of the owner coming through.
The reason why I cannot take my curiosities away from the street vendors passing by in front of me
may lie in the fact that I saw it as “the smallest project” wherean individual combines with their surroundings
and spontaneously contributes to society using a single body, having three major elements as the foundation.
Instead of adjusting to society, this “reverse behavior” making society adjust to them,
cunningly working its way through the existing scheme with humor, can be found everywhere in Jakarta,
and excites a person like me, brought up in Tokyo.
Aren’t we all unconsciously trying to meet social expectations?
It felt as if I am being questioned in this way.
In the middle of Tokyo,
Can we overcome this constraint and question?
In other words, by thinking about the question “Can we realize ‘FIVE LEGS’ in Tokyo?”
I want to start a study about the relationship between “a person and society.”
photo by Yuji Ito
Kaki limas are the mobile street stalls that come and go in the streets of Indonesia. The direct translation is “FIVE LEGS” and it refers to two wheels, one stopper, and one owner. Jun Kitazawa saw the kaki lima as “the smallest project in which an individual engages with society.” “FIVE LEGS” is an art project that creates a situation where a kaki lima appears in a Japanese city in order to question “an individual and society” in Japanese society with an watchword “Are kaki limas possible in Tokyo?”
FIVE LEGS JUN KITAZAWA with STARBUCKS
Period : 10 - 20 March 2018 Location : Ginza, Tokyo
[Jun Kitazawa Office Yakumo]
Jun Kitazawa / Marina Yamaguchi / Yuji Ito
[Open A Ltd.]
Masataka Baba / Kazutaka Ohashi / Yuri Shiotsu
FIVE LEGS Project Postcard & Statement Paper
Text & Photo : Jun Kitazawa
Translation : Miho Shimizu
Design : [YUTO HAMA DESIGN] Yuto Hama / Mai Yamaguchi
FIVE LEGS FACTORY Period : 28, 29, 30 September 2018 Location : Ueno park, Tokyo
UENOYES 2018 Ballon Days Supported by the Agency for Cultural Affairs Government of Japan in the fiscal year 2018.
Produced by Centering around the UENO Cultural Park and the surrounding area, we will offer various cultural programs based on the concept of UENOYES and communicate our messages to the world through these activities.