Commissioned by Katsurao Collective Artist in Residence, Fukushima, Japan
- Exhibited at Hikarie gallery8, Tokyo, Japan 5th Aug-17th Aug 2023

Katsurao Collective Artist in Residence, Open Studio Day 27-29 Feb 2023

An extract from VR world of DENKINOKAMISAMA (2023)

DENKINOKAMISAMA - meaning, 'Gods of Electricity' 

This work was produced during the residency in Katsurao Village, Futaba County, Fukushima. The entire village was evacuated after the nuclear accident in 2011, but villagers have returned since the alert was lifted. Rather than trying to recover what was lost, the project focused on what newly appeared in Katsurao Village after the disaster, and attempted to shift the way of seeing and to search for a way of coexistence with nature. (Nature in the true sense is indifferent, callous and frightening to humans)

New things in Katsurao Village: 
(i) Dosimeters 
For me, coming from outside the village, it is unusual that there are dosimeters all over the village; the machines show the radiation levels, but radiation is invisible. 'You can't see it but it’s there.' I feel the invisible presence. However, the villagers live everyday life without hesitation. I felt that the way they coexist while feeling the existence is like that living with Shinto gods.

(2) Katsurao  Electricity Company 
After the earthquake, a company called Katsurao Denryoku, which supplies electricity to the entire village using solar power as a resource, was established in order to become energy self-sufficient, taking into account emergencies that may occur in the future. Katsurao Denryoku is said to often experience power cut-offs. 
In a village where the festival culture, which once strengthened the unity of the community, has been affected by the disaster, I pondered whether the occurrence of power outages could take on a new significance. It might serve as an event that fosters the formation of collective memories among the villagers, given the potential for weakened community bonds.
There is a sense of coexisiting with god in the community system that is established closely with nature, such as sunlight, even through human technology. (At the heart of the festival culture is the recognition of the presence of deities within the uncontrollable forces of nature)

If humans are seen as part of nature, can human-made technology also be part of the idea of ‘Yaoyorozu ’? 
*Yaoyorozu - Shinto theory that says everything has gods within and it represents the art of coexisting with nature

In this project, I've created three deities: the "God of Electricity from Solar Energy," the "God of Electricity from Nuclear Power," and the "God of Neutron." These deities are fabricated and enshrined in a Metaverse shrine that can only be accessed with electricity.
Using the genealogy of deities from Japanese mythology, I've enabled the tracking of the ancestry of the Gods of Electricity. These deities represents a novel entity that appears to us in the age of electricity.

*When not on display, the data of the VR space is stored on a USB memory stick, giving it the appearance of a nonexistent shrine, much like an unseen deity.

Special Thanks to: Katsurao Village, Katsurao Collective, Katsurao Denryoku, Katsurao Muradukuri Kousha
Ise-city where I visited for research before the residency starts, Kogakkan University, Ise Creators Workation
Back to Top