“Rolling Counterpoint” , Skywatchers

locationTNFdate5, 20, 2017
Annual Skywatchers event œI Got A Truth To Tell 
May 20, 2017, 7:30-9:30 pmRSVP HERE
with the Skywatchers Ensemble and Melanie DeMore
Tenderloin National Forest (509 Ellis St.)


About Rolling Counterpoint

Rolling Counterpoint was developed by the artist while he was in residence at Montalvo’s Lucas Artists Residency Program in 2016. The project consists of two structures: a mobile teahouse and a stationary structure installed outdoors on Montalvo Arts Center™s 175-acre public park. In both teahouses, the artist shares tea with guests and engages them in discussion about their experiences and their concerns, giving participants a platform to share their perspectives. Guests have included members of the public, representatives from local organizations, thought-leaders, community organizers, and more.

These conversations are being recorded and posted (along with participants’ artwork) as part of an interactive archive on the project website: rollingcounterpoint.com.

Click here to watch one of Taro’s conversations:


Historically, the Japanese teahouse served as a space for contemplation and communion with others. According to Hattori, “in 16th-century Japan, against the backdrop of civil war, tea masters became political go-betweens while teahouses served as radically egalitarian spaces of nonviolence and provided opportunities for rational discourse, conviviality, political consensus and peace. Using this history as a point of departure, I am reimagining the teahouse as a generative space where guests can share stories and experiences, address conflict, foster understanding, and imagine new ways of being together. I am interested in using my teahouse as a platform to connect and bridge diverse and often disconnected communities–bringing them together around shared conversation.”

“Today more than ever, there is a pressing need for spaces where difficult conversation can take place and new strategies for productively dissecting the issues that divide us can be developed,” said Montalvo Curator Donna Conwell, who has worked closely with Hattori on coordinating every phase of the project. She continued: “Places for bravely raising important questions like What does belonging mean in the US today? How can we move past divisiveness to find more peaceful and respectful ways of being together? What does it mean to create spaces of inclusion? How do we promote a sense of cultural empathy? Addressing such questions feels especially urgent.”


The public is invited to drop in for tea and conversation with Hattori and make their voices heard. Guests will also engage in art-making activities related to the major themes of the project.


Berkeley Covenant Church
1632 Hopkins Street, Berkeley, CA
Sunday, May 7 10-10:30am & 12-4pm

At this event, Hattori will collect personal stories from the church parishioners, city employees, and the general public, and explore ongoing concerns centered on gentrification and community displacement. 
Tenderloin National Forest
Cohen Place, San Francisco, CA

Thursday, May 25, Friday, May 26, and Saturday, May 27 12-4pm
Dialogue will be encouraged among the Tenderloin™s diverse residents about issues facing their community, especially ongoing concerns centered on income inequality, gentrification, and homelessness.
Asian Art Museum
200 Larkin Street, San Francisco, CA
Saturday, June 10 [Times?]

This event will include live performance and interactive art making activities. Through print making, poetry readings, and vocal performance, visitors will explore themes and questions generated during earlier conversations at the Tenderloin National Forest and elsewhere, and reflect on how they can guide their community toward a better future.