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Prix 1987 - 2007

ORF Oberösterreich

Koichi Nishi, Shinji Sasada , Keiko Takahashi

Rakugaki investigates the line between the analog and the digital. The essence of this artwork is about combining the visual effects and the real time interactive nature of computer technology and how it interprets sound and transforms it into a line and animates it. The ultimate aim of this work is to be exhibited in public areas such as subways, shops, and lobbies of buildings, where there is a large open space and an unspecified number of people are able to experience the work.

For this work, I used pictorial representation. Drawing (with a line) is very analog. It is a direct form of expression and has a primal quality. In ancient times, people drew drawings of animals in caves. The first pictorial representation for children is also drawing. I included a device, which transforms a sound created by an instrument into a drawing. An instrument is also analog and one does not need to deal with any complexity.

This idea came from a poetic image of a sound being transformed into a line. When a person plays a toy trumpet, a line will appear. The line starts to bend and wiggle according to the sound of the trumpet, like a snake charmer charming a snake with his flute. The lines start to transform into animals, insects, birds and human forms. They start to become animated and disappear.

By combining the analog, an element of child’s play, with computer technology, microphone, projector, and PC, I tried to create a simple yet interactive work The digital part, a huge cube image, could be projected on a wall, ceiling or floor. The idea of the cube’s visual effect came from an image of turning a picture book. Each surface of the cube becomes a screen, and the audience can move it with the sound of drums or maracas. The surface will have an image of land, sky, sea and a line drawn. At the sound of a toy trumpet, it will start wiggling like a spring and transforming into the most suitable animal for the chosen environment, will become animated.

In addition, when a line is drawn, changes its form or becomes animated, it will generate the sound of a bell, a children’s piano and so on. These sounds are something like a rattle to calm a crying baby, or a sound you hear every day bringing back sweet memories of one’s past. The warmth, beauty and the approachable aspect of a line drawing promote the audience’s participation, as they observe how a line is transformed, interacting with the work.

My aim is to create a piece of work that is enjoyed by people of all ages. They simply see, feel and experience without giving it much thought.