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‘Minamo mirror’ Mirror on Water by TakaToku

Ueno Park, a famous sightseeing spot in Tokyo. The first work of the Space Production Lab, which Takatoku manages and is the co-founder, was made for the ‘Ueno Cultural Park TOKYO SUKI FES’ and was displayed during shows in 2016 and 2017.

“The Suki Festival” has its origins in Kakuzo Okakura, a figure who played a crucial role in shaping the development of modern Japan, and his philosophy which was explained in The Book of Tea. The idea of ‘suki’ refers to the tea ceremony itself and the warm feeling associated with the ritual of drinking tea, but also Japanese life and beliefs, as Okakura laid downis his book.

Following Okakura’s legacy, this park was made a stage for cultural facilities all based around the idea of ‘suki’. At the festival various art works, workshops and concerts were spread across the park. Ueno Park is always full of people, from Japan and/or abroad. A very important feature of this park is a beautiful lake, called SHINOBAZUIKE. Many enjoy a joyful boat ride during daytime, but at night the lake completely changes its image and becomes a very peaceful, calm and unspoiled place. Takatoku favoured the quietest ‘time zone’ – the lake at night, because only then he could see a beautiful phenomenon – the city coloures reflecting in the surface of the lake.

This installation focused on the reflections on the surface of the lake, its waves and ripples. The artwork is using the face of the lake and enhancing its beauty by adding blue light lines that cover the entire lake.The colours of the added lights stand out from the surroundings, but at the same time stay in harmony with nature. Therefore, the artists mixed two colours of LEDs to produced this unique light.

Each LED unit is structured to float individually but still remains in a distance from the surface of the water at all times. The images created by the lights are never the same; they are always changing thanks to the affects of the weather and time.

By placing a series of individual lights around the shoreline, the real world and the virtual image distorted the reflection on the surface of the water and created a unique combination that follows the aesthetic formula of ‘MITATE’. ‘MITATE’ is a technique that is often found in, for example, Japanese gardens and can be compared to ‘a metaphor’.

In this installation, the three circles of light on the lake represent the islands, and the lights on the shoreline divide the real world from the unreal/imaginary world.

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‘Spot’ by Karolina Halatek

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