Omnilogue: Your Voice is Mine

Photo of Omnilogue: Your Voice is Mine

The Japan Foundation hosts a series of three exhibitions in Perth, New Delhi and Singapore in 2011 – 2013, co-curated by East Asian curators who had stayed in Japan in summer 2010 through the Japan Foundation’s JENESYS Programme and Japanese curators of the same generation. Each exhibition has a different curatorial theme and title, specific to its local, cultural contexts. The keyword to connect three different exhibitions introducing contemporary Japanese artists is the notion of Omnilogue (omni + logue) that is based on the concept of multiple dialogues that result from communication across various cultures. The exhibitions share the common goal to pioneer new possibilities of discussion related to cultural exchange in the 21st century. This exhibition in Singapore is the final presentation of the Omnilogue series.

The artists will create commissioned works which will push their way into the historical relationship between Singapore and/or Southeast Asia and Japan, furthermore the historical, cultural, social context of NUS Museum which is the venue of the exhibition, by reflecting the reality from their own viewpoint.

How can we share the experience of others? Where is the boundary between “self” and “other” to begin with? This exhibition title Your Voice Is Mine indicates a site where the different aspects of identity would be opened within oneself, at the polyphonic state of mind overlapping “self” and “other” caused by their artworks.

Omnilogue: Your Voice is Mine

Dates January 19 - April 21, 2013
Closed on Mondays & Public Holidays
Venue NUS Museum, National University of Singapore
OrganizersThe Japan Foundation, NUS Museum, National University of Singapore
Artists Makiko Koie
Shun Sasa
Motohiro Tomii
Fuyuki Yamakawa
Takayuki Yamamoto
Curators Shabbir Hussain Mustafa (Curator, NUS Museum)
Michelle Ho (Assistant Curator, Singapore Art Museum)
Tsukasa Ikegami (Curator, Otani Memorial Art Museum, Nishinomiya City)
Tomoko Yabumae (Curator, Museum of Contemporary Art Tokyo)

* To view images of the works from this exhibition, please visit the NUS Museum website.


Artist Profile

Makiko Koie

Photo of Makiko Koie
From the series G, Kr-1
Type C print
Courtesy of the artist

Born in 1969 in Kyoto, Japan. Based in Kyoto. Koie produces photographic works that give visibility to the otherwise invisible atmosphere of a particular site or a particular moment. One of her series of photographic work, for which she was awarded the Ohara Musuem of Art Prize at The Vision of Contemporary Art exhibition in 2005, captures the dynamics of a crowd of spectators at a stadium and has been critically acclaimed as a visual representation of emotion and feeling. She also produces other series of works such as overlapping the images of exhibited paintings and audiences at a museum, and reflecting green scenery suffused with light. Her first photo book entitled Aura was published in 2010. Her major exhibitions include: Solo show, Zeit-Foto Salon, Tokyo, 2010; Solo show, Ohara Museum of Art, Kurashiki, 2009; Collection II, 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa, 2007; Kiss in the Dark: Contemporary Japanese Photography, Tokyo Metropolitan Museum of Photography, 2001.
From the series "P" P-57 to be presented in this exhibition is a pair of photos Koie took at a stadium. And the other two are green scenery photos that reflect some footprints of older generations. This combination of three images involves questions such as collective memories, dynamics of history, diversity of individuals, and cultural identity, which will function as an entry point to this exhibition curated under the theme of resonance with others or within ourselves.

Shun Sasa

Photo of Shun Sasa
Story of that (reference work)
Eight speakers, Wood, Tools, e.t.c
Courtesy of the artist

Born in 1986 in Miyagi, Japan. Based in Tokyo. Sasa utilizes complex layers of sound, structure, and text in his installation work to create a site where audience can feel and be a part of a world of overlapping fiction, reality, and distinct space-time, creating fictitious moments that may come true in the future. One of his recent works, The Desk and The Monitor, looks at the possibilities of the wood from the desk being made into other objects, such as a violin, a baseball bat, or a spectacle frame. His major exhibitions include: MOT Annual 2012, Museum of Contemporary Art Tokyo, 2012; Daegu Photo Biennale 2012: Dance on a Thin Line, Daegu Art Factory, 2012; No Man’s Land, Ambassade de France au Japon, Tokyo, 2009.
Hypnosis for Lovers / Memoirs of War (Autobiography of Kei) to be presented in this exhibition is a video-based installation focused on a grandfather of Sasa’s girlfriend, who was a survivor of World War II from Papua New Guinea. After he passed away, a memoir that tells us his harsh experience of war was found in a safe. The artist intends to approach the realm of mind that cannot be easily shared with other people having different stories, by acting as the ex-soldier in survival and in writing memoirs with complicated feelings to show it to other people.


Photo of SHIMURAbros
SEKILALA - uncovered family (reference work)
Three-screen installation
Courtesy of the artist

A sister-brother duo of Yuka (b.1976) and Kentaro (b.1979). Both born in Yokohama, Japan. Based in Yokohama. SHIMURAbros are critically acclaimed artists interested in the history of cinema and the deconstruction of cinema as a medium, utilizing various forms of films and incorporating sculpture and installation to create new expressions of imagery that prompt the somatic senses of the audience. They have been invited to a lot of art exhibitions, furthermore Festival International du Film de Cannes SFC in 2007 and Berlinale Talent Campus at the 55th Berlin International Film Festival in 2005. Their major exhibitions include: Moving Pictures and Depicted Time: Phantasmagoria, Yokohama Civic Art Gallery, 2012; Solo show Film Without Film, Taka Ishii Gallery Kyoto, 2010; 13th Japan Media Arts Festival, awarded Excellence Prize, 2009; Solo show, BankArt Studio NYK, Yokohama, 2008.
Through their research in Singapore, SHIMURAbros focus on the archaeological materials exhibited at the LKC Gallery and produce a new video-based installation by using plastic crates that actually packed these ancient things. ROAD MOVIE – Road to Singapore is a road movie showing us the trajectory of the movement that is recorded as a shadow on the moving subject. It will thereby open the site where contemporary audiences can relive the feelings of the historical object and the people related to in a long time.

Motohiro Tomii

Photo of Motohiro Tomii
Gold Finger (reference work)
Photo by Keizo Kioku
Courtesy of Organizing Committee for Yokohama Triennale

Born in 1973 in Niigata, Japan. Based in Tokyo. Tomii creates sculptural artwork using ready-made materials with minimal modification and looks at possibilities of giving “sculpture” a new form and meaning, working within the restraints of the objects he uses in his sculptures. For Tomii, creating artwork is “a quest for ‘a quality of incomprehensibleness’” that he aims to reflect in his creations. His major exhibitions include: Water and Land – Niigata Art Festival 2012, Bandaijima site, Niigata, 2012; MOT Annual 2011, Museum of Contemporary Art Tokyo, 2011; Yokohama Triennale 2011, Yokohama Museum of Art, 2011; Re-Modernologio phase2: Observation and notation, Aomori Contemporary Art Centre, 2011. Also he continues to hold Motohiro Tomii Solo Exhibition: “Special Exhibition = Permanent Collection Exhibition”, ARCUS Studio, Ibaraki, since 2008 till they are naturally cleared away and to present Today’s Sculpture on Twitter every day, attracting people to critique and think about the existing gallery space and system.
For this exhibition, Tomii created sculptural artworks with gallery guides and brochures printed for exhibitions having been held in the LKC Gallery, including ceramic and archaeological collections. These Another Piece are set throughout the gallery and perniciously invading the institutional territory of museum, which will critically show us the possibly inverted relationship between artwork and museum.

Fuyuki Yamakawa

Photo of Fuyuki Yamakawa
The Voice Over (reference work)
Sound and video installation
Courtesy of Museum of Contemporary Art Tokyo

Born in 1973 in London, UK. Based in Kanagawa, Japan. Yamakawa creates many works in various fields such as music, fine arts and performing arts. He is a master of throat singing called “Khoomei” in Tuva Republic and is famous for the performance picking up and amplifying the sound of his heartbeat with an electronic stethoscope. One of his popular works, The Voice-over, is a sound-based installation that reconstructs memories using recorded voices from the past. It was shown at Busan Biennale 2008 and International Festival for Arts and Media Yokohama 2009, and then acquired by Museum of Contemporary Art Tokyo. Recently, he produced theatrical work combined with music, performance and installation such as Kurokami Tanka (Black Hair Ballad), Vacant, Tokyo, 2010, and Pneumonia, Aichi Arts Center, Nagoya, 2010. And he also appeared on the stage of Kinkakuji – The Temple of the Golden Pavilion, Kanagawa Arts Theatre, 2011, directed by Amon Miyamoto.
Platform for sharing her stories to be presented at the exhibition is a new sound installation that two kinds of recorded voices are overlapping on the platform. The first is of past dialogues between the artist and his grandmother; the other is of interviewees talking about their memories of grandmother. Furthermore, this ongoing project is open to everyone in Singapore and in Japan, by telling one’s own story concerning grandmother over phone lines. As for the box structure, this is kind of stylobate to transfer the remnant of Shonan Shinto shrine by being synchronized and shaken with the actual soundscape there, which will prepare an open platform connecting the past, present and future between two countries.

Takayuki Yamamoto

Photo of Takayuki Yamamoto
New Hell (Aichi) (reference work)
Video-based installation
Courtesy of the artist

Born in 1974 in Aichi, Japan. Based in Aichi. After receiving an MA in Fine Arts in London, Yamamoto worked as a teacher at primary school in Aichi. And then he started creating the video-based installation with materials collected from children’s workshop. He challenges the rigid way of thought that adults have come to adopt using these materials, where he invites viewers to look at things through the eyes of children. He has various on-going projects, each exploring different themes such as “future” and “hell”. His major exhibitions include: EXPERIMENTA 5th International Biennial of Media Art, RMIT Gallery, Melbourne, 2012; Takamatsu Contemporary Art Annual vol.02, Takamatsu City Museum of Art, 2012; Phantoms of Asia – Contemporary Awakens the Past, Asian Art Museum, San Francisco, 2012; Aichi Triennale 2010, Chojamachi site, Nagoya, 2010; All about Laughter: Humor in Contemporary Art, Mori Art Museum, Tokyo, 2007.
In Singapore, Yamamoto held a children’s workshop to show them a Buddhist mandala depicting the linkage of heaven, hell and this world, then, to let them create their own imaginary hells. This ongoing project entitled New Hell consists of workshop deliverables and participants’ comments, which show uniqueness of personal morality heavily influenced by each culture, and also implies how to sympathize and coexist with others in this world.

[Contact Us]

The Japan Foundation
Asia and Oceania Section, Arts and Culture Dept.
Tel: +81-(0)3-5369-6062 Fax: +81(0)3-5369-6038
Person in charge: Yasuko Furuichi E-mail, Keiko Suzuki E-mail

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