Sep 8, 2013
For the start of our Contemporary Arts Partnership with SunRice company at Coleambally NSW Australia with photographer Mayu Kanamori and sound-based artist Vic McEwan, we have been working with SunRice staff, rice growers and community members to re-imagine the site.
I feel a sense of coincidence in planning this project, because I’ve just started to live in Akita prefecture a well-known rice growing country in Japan. And this region has many interesting local culture strongly related to the rice growing.
We are trying to collaborate using our different skills, and we plan to show the result at the SunRice rice mill on Saturday 21 September. The presentation could be like a tour and a journey through art works installed in the mill site.
Mar 10, 2013
We are pleased to hold the third “New Comers’ Views” exhibit as a part of the pilot project for launching the “Immigration Museum Tokyo”.This exhibit is constructed in two new perspectives. First is the “Communication Project by the Citizens” in which the ordinary citizens create artworks based on interviews with foreigners living in the same community about their cultural backgrounds that are inherent in their current lives. Secondly, we curated works by the artists who are originally from outside of Japan now live in Tokyo. Their artworks show how their daily lives here have influenced their ideas and thoughts.
In our past exhibits, we aimed to obtain our own viewpoints that are free from any preconceived notions and prejudices; to achieve that, we tried our best to watch and feel the lives of our “new neighbors” with as diverse looks as possible. I believe that the above-mentioned two perspectives would give us even a broader horizon and another angle. Of course, each expression includes much more viewpoints and awaits for the audience’s viewpoints to be added. We hope this exhibit will trigger more dialogues.
EXHIBITION "NEWCOMER’S VIEW 2013"
-A Pilot Project for The Immigration Museum Tokyo-
・Dates 3/3/2013 - 3/23/2013
・Hours 14:00－19:00 (closing time depends on events)
・Venue Koganei Art Spot Chateau 2F (6-5-3, Honcho, Koganei)
5 minutes walk from JR Musashikoganei Station (Exit South).
[participating ｖisual artists]
・Golmaryam Masood Ansari (Iran)
・Jaime Humphreys (UK)
・Liu Lushan (China)
[member of "intercultural communication project by local residents"]
You can down load PDF of the exhibition flyer(English&Japanese) from the following link.
Jun 30, 2011
“To be honest, I felt sad when I heard the people confessing their mixed emotions of becoming victims of the earthquake. But when I saw the images of the boundlessly cheerful people, which were just the opposite of their confessions, I realized that until the earthquake hit, they too had been living ordinary lives, just like us. I was encouraged by the film,” This is a comment we received from one of our audience after our first screening session. I think this comment summarizes the meaning of why we are hosting this screening to support the victims.
People are searching for way to “empathize.” By curious coincidence these four short films, which were created four months before the earthquake in a workshop held in Iwaki, Fukushima, are now bringing us closer to Iwaki with a sense of “empathy”. We have realized that these films have enabled us to easily cross over the borders that had automatically emerged between the victims and supporters. What we are doing is screening the works created by those who unwillingly became victims and charging a fee that we redirect as relief money. I think the victims find it comfortable to accept this form of support.
We have chosen the phrase “Turning Visions” as the title for this project. Initially, when we held the workshop, the phrase referred to the positive effect of transforming the ordinary everyday into interesting images from creative viewpoint. Now after the disaster, we are placing our hope in this phrase in order to “shift” from these trying times to a better future. If you are willing to support the screening project to support Iwaki, please contact us.
We’ve already held three screenings of the project in Tokyo area. Now we are trying to expand the area, If you have interest to manage the screening (as charity) or need further information, please contact to firstname.lastname@example.org
Turning Visions website (Japanese only)
Jan 12, 2011
Please Join Us in the Project “Newcomer’s View” For Up-coming Immigration Museum Tokyo.
What is the “Newcomer’s View” Project?
Through art projects, we offer opportunities to citizens to get to know different cultures - cultures of people who came from outside of Japan, who now living in their areas in outlying parts of Tokyo. We also intend to offer people from different countries places and chances for exchange. We would like to start the project creating networks by communicating with families and doing research on new and realistic viewpoints of different cultures. Our goal is to make a collaborative work to be exhibited at the Immigration Museum (tentative title). Our future plan is to open the Immigration Museum in Koganei City, introduce various cultures, and promote exchange among local communities.
Please Join us!
We are recruiting non-Japanese families and individuals in the areas to join us in the project. We would like to research your unique cultures through the key concepts: “Preservation, Adaptation, Merging.” Interviews, photo sessions, and collaborating in creating artworks are planned. Can you tell us interesting differences between your own culture and Japanese culture?
This project is a part of “Artful Action,” an initiative to promote art and culture in Koganei City, started in 2009. A collaboration of committees consisting of citizens, local government and universities, its purpose is to make Koganei city life more attractive. Participants should enter this project with full assurance of our best intensions.
E-mail: email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org
http://artfullaction.net/cn13/pg116.html (Japanese only)
Address: 'Chateau Koganei' Bld. 2nd floor, 6-5-3 Honncho Koganei-City, Tokyo, Japan 184-0004
May 30, 2010
Two-channel video installation titled ‘Family Snapshot #3’ can be seen in Manila, The Philippines now. This opportunity is a part of group exhibition for 10th Anniversary Celebration of API, titled ‘Creative Index: An Exhibition’ which is including works by 18 artists at 5 exhibition spaces in Manila. My video installation is as part of the group show at 'ART INFORMAL' where is known as one of active artist-run center since 2006.
About the work, please refer the following extract from exhibition catalogue.
-With this work, the artist sought to create a real family with people from a variety of backgrounds ( e.g. race or religion) as members, and attempt to critique the fixed definition of family, as a vital institution that has not been questioned. Iwai sets a premise that a family is “a collective body of separate individuals, “when in fact, without the effort to maintain the family’s unity, it can easily fall apart. -
Creative Index –An Exhibition
Ten Creative Years by the API Fellows
May 28- June 13, 2010
Curated by Joselina Cruz
Shigeaki Iwai’s video installation is exhibited at:
ART INFORMAL, Mandaluyang City, Metro Manila
Oct 24, 2009
This video project was continued in the Philippines from July to Sep. 2009 in two places: Metro Manila and Santiago City in Isabela province. In Manila, Green Papaya Art Projects, which has been the leading organization in the alternative art scene in Manila since 2000, coordinated the workshop and interviews with students and young artists. I was also invited as a resident-artist by the director, Yuan Mor'O Ocampo at Balay na Santiago, an art center in Santiago City. There were various people with different occupations and age groups. The participants in two workshops totaled fifteen. I visited and shot videos on eleven families. In urban areas in this country, it seems that there are many interracial and intercultural families. Family life there is influenced by Catholicism. It is also said that ten percent of the population works abroad. I attempted to explore the theme thinking of the relationships of the workers abroad and the families left in the Philippines.
The families I met through the projects had some sense of discomfort within the families. In other words, they had something like “gaps” within. But the families had accepted the aspects of gaps and solved them in their own ways to be a part of everyday life and then formed their own family lifestyles. The will to transform those gaps into something positive is the creative act and origin of drama that emerges through our daily lives.
After this, I plan to prepare several opportunities to present the edited video footage from whole project, to people from Thailand, Indonesia, and the Philippines, now living in Japan. By doing this, the two different viewpoints are cross examined: my vision which is the one of the artist staying abroad to record through the eyes of outsiders and the one of the expatriate looking at their homeland away from home. I would like to reexamine the standards of common interpretation between the two groups on meanings of each scene from my shootings.
Thanks to Green Papaya Art Projects, Ms.Karen Flores of CCP, Ms.Mariko Sorimachi of Cordillera Green Network and Mr.Yuan Mor'O Ocampo. I very much appreciate their cooperation, and above all, I would like to express deepest gratitude to the participants and their families for accepting the collaboration.
Jul 1, 2009
The English page of the on–going project 'Field of Nusa' which I mentioned here before was updated. What was considered on every step of the process, the importance of the workshop series in the project and others are commented. Please visit the site if you are interested in it.
Apr 5, 2009
Followed by my stay in Thailand last summer, I am having the second phase of the journey to record details of modern families here in Indonesia. Staying in a big city Jakarta and working on the project for more than six weeks, I am surprised to find the variety of definitions of family people give. It is undeniable that family is the main element to support the structure of the community. Even in a big city like Jakarta, it is surprising for Japanese city dwellers like me to find that they have never lost their instinct and skill to form, function and keep the community.
While I am staying here, I would like to record how the young people find themselves in Muslim social custom as well as to search these backgrounds. It can be said that the gap between the way young people think and the traditional way of thinking in the Muslim life in which the external appearance of individual belief is emphasized is easy to be clear in their family. However I believe Indonesian young people have their own ways, which are different from catering to the westernization and the rebelliousness because of their age.
…the reason what I would like to mention cannot help being vague is that explaining this atmosphere in text is not the final purpose but intending to express it to appeal to people’s senses in visual images to the last.
In carrying out the project, Ruang Rupa, forum lenteng, the artists community in Jakarta and Cemeti Art House in Yogyakarta cooperated with me a lot on this project. I very much appreciate their support, and I am extremely thankful to my friends in Indonesia especially Arahmaiani and Krisna Murti for their proper suggestion.
Jan 6, 2009
I have been in Singapore since 10 December. I have been working on the multicultural communities as a subject matter for a commission of Singapore Fringe Festival '09.
This festival mainly consists of performing arts, but Fringe Gallery (a section of visual arts) is also rich in content. I selected 'Lullaby' sung in the home as a topic for the festival theme "Arts & Family" this year. 'Lullaby' functions as a medium of telling the cultural background and the atmosphere of generations as well as a song to make you sleepy. Moreover, unlike the traditional events, 'Lullaby' has a distinction that it is handed down from generation to generation on totally private level without any obligation or restriction by anyone else. Collecting these lullabies in Singapore makes it clear that there have been cultural fusion and elimination.
Interesting facts that the effect of Malay children's songs compiled by the government in the 70s, local songs translated into English by mothers who gave up taking over the native language, and the children learning the songs not from their parents but from their foreign maids will be reflected in my project. The works will be installation room consisting of the voice of 'Lullaby' collected in Singapore and the image acted by the local collaborators.
7 to 18 January 2009
* Artist talk on Friday 9 January at 7:30pm
Opening hours: 11am to 8pm daily
Venue: Gallery, The Substation
A Fringe commission & World Premiere
Sep 2, 2008
The long-term video project which was planned for the past few years has started in Thailand. This is a project of collecting the images of usual family lives, doing workshops with the local residents in three ASEAN countries such as Thailand, Indonesia and Philippines.
I think that the confrontation of “the universality and the vernacular” which is inherent in the basic unit which constitutes a community called a family, or "the formalization of the lifestyle by globalization and preservation of a tradition style" actualizes itself on the boundary of the every day and non-every day in a family life. At the same time,
the ambiguous boundary of the concept of "the documentary and the fiction" which the expression technique of an image has will be verified in this project.
During my stay in Bangkok from July, the participants were collected in the workshop carried out mainly by the students studying film and video. The various details of 11 families have been videotaped so far. Some of the videotaping developed into collaboration with the participants and both of us tried to catch the family’s figure full of life. Consequently, the moment that a family’s every day changes into non-every day was certainly perceived and we succeeded in recording some of them. The project in Thailand will be carried on until 10 September. The same project will be carried out in the other two countries later on. The completion of the work as the whole (the contemporary images of family) will pass through the process by finally analyzing and editing the detail images collected in the three countries respectively. I will keep you informed of the progress here.
Thanks to API Fellowship, the realization of this project became possible. I also got full support from The Jim Thompson Art Center in Bangkok for the substantial activities in Thailand. Moreover, The Japan Foundation Bangkok office gave me an opprtunity to present this projrct. I very much appreciate their cooperation, and above all, I am very thankful to the participants and their families for accepting the collaboration.