Nostalgia, Amnesia 2019
Single-channel HD digital video / 16:9 / Colour / Sound / 45' / France, Japan
Installation view at The National Art Center, Tokyo, 2019
Photo: Nobutada Omote
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Nostalgia, Amnesia turns the spotlight on the sheep wool industry from modern to contemporary times. The subject matter of this film is the brink of our heterogeneous world which has been exposed to extinction. With juxtaposing the distinct countries, this trial treats of social, cultural and political issues beyond borders.
From Our Heterogeneous World
In recent years, I have been using documentary way in my work. People who are familiar with my previous works are often surprised at this sudden change in my practice. However, documentary approaches are a good fit for someone like me, who is not very aware of what is happening in the world, as it allows me to observe the world in depth and express my social interests directly.
By leaving Japan for the overseas study program, I came to witness traces of how people and cultures have crossed borders, migrated, and transformed. With the hope of expressing what I saw through my own perspective, I have been exploring various motifs that can weave together different times and places. My interest is increasingly focused on the juncture that lies between the traditional and contemporary spheres. One of the themes I have been pursuing is the history and recollection of “animal power,” which is the labor of livestock. Using that as a point of departure, I expect to continue creating work in order to observe contemporary life while freely transcending different fields including the histories of technology, politics, economics, culture, and ecology.
The process of creating this work, which resembles the storyline of Haruki Murakami’s A Wild Sheep Chase, transported me to a small village in southwest France where the signs of the Middle Ages still remain, a mountain range in the Basque region where pastoral culture carries on, and the area of Sanrizuka in Narita City that was caught up in the vicissitudes of modernization in Japan. Not just a physical journey, it was also one of awareness whereby my focus shifted onto local histories and memories. As globalization advances, can these people and landscapes shown on the screen from across the border between East and West become a resistance that emerges from this heterogeneous world we are living in? I await the day when these images are projected in the future as a reflection of the contemporary age.