OPEN SITE 2016-2017 Open Call Program - Jury members' comments

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OPEN SITE 2016-2017 Open Call Program - Jury members' comments

What, exactly, are today's artists hoping to accomplish amidst the conditions in the contemporary world and in present-day Japan? I was enveloped with this sense of crisis--a thing that also affects me personally--as I came face to face with the numerous projects' plans I was charged with evaluating. Serving as a jury this time around, I believe I was not the only one who felt this way. The differences between artistic genres are inherently negligible, and I don't have much interest in works that attempt to shock or comfort the people of this transient world. The things that really matter are truly solitary, intellectual activities and pursuits by artists with an eye toward the future. As a result, many of the works I chose may appear plain or uninspired at first glance, but I believe that I have singled out numerous works appropriate to introduce here in Tokyo as it stands in today's world.

Masahiro Miwa
Composer, Media Artist/ Professor, Institute of Advanced Media Arts and Sciences [IAMAS]

As a program open to applicants throughout the public sphere, and a program which strives to provide opportunities for people in an expansive range of genres, I feel that we have offered new possibilities for a wide array of participants, including those involved in art, music and the performance arts as well as leaders of lectures and workshops. This diversity, of course, has made it quite challenging to serve as a jury: I had a hard time establishing different criteria for judging each of the individual genres and formats involved as I strove to determine what qualifies as expression rooted in actuality. I tried to choose works that clearly expressed ideas and intents in consideration of the societal conditions under which participating artists and presenters operated, their expressive intents related to Tokyo as the venue, awareness of modern-day problems inherent in the relevant genres, and other such factors.

Minoru Hatanaka
Senior Curator, NTT InterCommunication Center [ICC]

When constrictive, set forms are taken out of the picture, I feel as if this time's proceedings were an examination not only of the participants being judged, but of the judges themselves. Can specific artistic forms as well as highly specialized, art-related jargon--the various words and phrases that have become standard within the set boundaries of certain activities and relevant venues--stand on their own separate from its functionality related to a specific field or genre? The artist being judged must work to develop the persuasive powers needed to overcome such obstacles, and the judge must at times honestly reflect on his or her restrictive fixation on such limitations while at others must facing a self that has become indiscriminately entranced or intoxicated by them. We have only just begun to experiment with this type of approach in Japan, and without a doubt we still lack experience. Obviously, this means our experience with producing such output is also insufficient.

Atsushi Sugita
Art Critic/ Professor, Joshibi University of Art and Design

One might say that the efforts of Tokyo Wonder Site (TWS) have resulted in the continual formation of "rifts" or "interstices" in the public realm. We have always provided support for innovative endeavors that pursue new directions rather than those that rely on established formats, patterns, precedents or customs. And when pursuing such alternative directions under government-supported cultural policies, we believe that it is important to ensure sufficient possibilities and potential for a diverse range of creative activities. OPEN SITE is a reexamination of the TOKYO EXPERIMENTAL FESTIVAL and Emerging Artists Support Program--which have contributed to the discovery of so many talents and creation of numerous projects--in order to achieve a new venue for expressive potential. The programs of TWS up until now have been utilized by numerous artists seeking venues for experimentation, and we have listened carefully to such artists' aspirations and made an effort to select from among submissions the works that accurately reflect actuality and that feel real from both the perspectives of the judges themselves and society as a whole. It is in these public "rifts" or "interstices" that we can experience the beginnings of some truly singular things.

Yusaku Imamura
Director, Tokyo Wonder Site

The OPEN SITE project pursues cross-genre and -format public recruitment of, and support for, artists on an even wider-reaching scale than that of Tokyo Wonder Site. OPEN SITE's first public appeal for contributions garnered more than 250 applicants, two-thirds of whom applied from locations outside of Japan. Efforts included our Emerging Artists Support Program, in which we reached out to artists throughout society and provided thoroughgoing support from initial recruitment all the way up to the actual holding of exhibitions and shows, and our TOKYO EXPERIMENTAL FESTIVAL, a music- and sound-themed event revolving around carefully selected experimental presentations and exhibitions. These two programs have been held nine and ten times respectively--a testament to their growing significance in the public eye. The judges this time around felt that the cross-genre concept itself had lost much of its meaning, and instead focused on the meaning of the Tokyo venue itself as well as the significance of the present as it relates to Tokyo. In a time when it has become difficult to express overarching narratives, it is hoped that the painstakingly selected projects shown at this Tokyo venue will be able to elucidate some of that meaning we hope to further explore.

Minori Kuroda
Director of Arts Program and Residency Division, Tokyo Wonder Site

OPEN SITE 2016-2017
Project A

OS_banner_G_mini.jpgPeriod: October 21, 2016 - March 26, 2017
Venue: TWS Hongo
12 projects / 33 performances & screenings

Project B
OS_banner_H_mini.jpgPeriod : Part 1 | Oct 15 - Nov 13, 2016
      Part 2 | Nov 26 - Dec 25, 2016
      Part 3 | Jan 14 - Feb 12, 2017
      Part 4 | Feb 25 - Mar 26, 2017
Venue: TWS Hongo
8 projects (2 projects per each term)