1945 Mixed media installation with 05'44", HD Animation (2014)
Exhibited at Unlocking the diary, Folkstone Art Fringe 30 Aug - 2 Nov2014, curated by Eiko Honda
Unlocking diaries is an invaluable means of understanding people who are no longer alive. I have no memory of my grandfather, as he passed away 32 years ago. To read a diary is to trace a person's personality, and in the process to reflect on oneself. By reading my grandfather's diaries from 1945, the year the second world war ended, I have attempted to put myself into the picture of the man I discovered and to recover a part of my heritage that has long since disappeared. The diaries showed a sense of humour and compassion for his family, which I found timeless and moving. “1945” is an installation piece, which incorporates animation video and objects. The phantasmagoric animation uses fragments from Ryoichi’s diary – fragments in which I found empathy but also opposition. The objects are reconstructions of objects mentioned in the diary. They are placed in front of the screen to part-obscure it The audience has to move around, make an effort to see the screen and to understand what it shows. This feeling of obstacle is intended to represent the experience of reading a diary – of having access to words not intended for the gaze of others. The diary occupies a symbolic space, demanding the reader imaginatively reconstruct meaning . However, we may never be sure of fully grasping the author’s real intentions.