Ars Electronica 2007
Festival-Website 2007
Back to:
Festival 1979-2007



'Hiraki Sawa Hiraki Sawa

Digital video, 14 minutes, black and white, stereo sound

In Trail the faint shadows of camels, elephants and other animals migrate silently through the interstices of an ordinary domestic interior, empty save for these fleeting and selfeffacing presences. Their progression is constant, without pause nor change in pace. They move to a rhythm entirely their own, a twilight waltz of the most minimal kind. The paths they follow lead the viewer on a detailed journey through the unnoticed—unremarkable—ridges and plains that comprise the terrain of daily life—window ledges and table tops, the folds of a quilt, and the plughole of a bathroom sink. Their skies are wall and ceiling, their horizon, lintel and shelf. And when these fading creatures have passed, all is quiet and still.

Which creatures live here, sleep and walk and make things here? Whose spaces are these? Where does mine end and theirs begin? And which is more real?

Artificial landscapes, unexpected worlds, domestic and imaginary spaces interwoven, presences both felt and remembered … My present preoccupation is with those things that can be seen in the corners, on the edges, in between and beyond and somewhere else. I am working to create places, and a sense of changing, shifting perspective, inside the most familiar and the most commonplace. There is, on the one hand, the idea of traveling to faraway places whilst remaining within the confines of my own room. Places which are perhaps as much made as they are visited. But then there is also the possibility that I might see and hear—if very still—all that can be seen and heard, everything happening right here, nearby, close-up, at the tips of my fingers and just above my head … The film—in black and white—is projected onto a large screen in an otherwise empty room, but for 2 speakers, high in the corners and out of sight. The soundtrack is minimal, full of silences and gentle repetition..

Trail was commissioned for the Yokohama Triennale 2005. Soundtrack by Dale Berning.