Redtory Museum of Contemporary Art (RMCA)
Another Cinema Hall6, RMCA
Hiraki Sawa'svideos contain psychological landscapes, unexpected worlds and the interweavingof domestic and imaginary spaces. Populated with animals, inanimate objects,hybrids and people, his characters search for their 'place' in the universes ofmemory, displacement and migration he has created.
Absent is a video work by Hiraki Sawa that was initially shown as aninstallation at the Wind on Mount Rokko Chapel designed by Tadao Ando inJapan. There, it was composed of a circular projection screen with two gramophonehorns that provided stereo sound. But, wherever it is shown, this work exploresthe subliminal, the idea of things moving at the edge and beyond the wall ofour perception; it presents an intimate, fictive space populated by a fantasticparade of surreal pseudo-domestic “creatures”—a perambulatory tea kettle, adancing cup, a flying spoon—all of them traveling between spaces and locationsthat are difficult to define.
Sawa's video other installations are also comprised ofintimate observations sited in transitory landscapes. In these, familiarsurroundings are inhabited by strangely poetic forms, such as trees sproutingfrom tables or clocks endowed with legs. While his works are often shot inspecific locations – Noto, Ishinomaki, his London apartment, the Australianoutback – he extracts elements from these particular wild or domesticlandscapes and translates them into “non-places" of his own, creating in theprocess a form of personal cosmology. He considers each new work as a hub,rather in the same way that airports are hubs for transit, and connects themwith each other through leitmotifs of sculptural and painterly objects. Theviewer is free to travel through them at will, to wherever he or she maydesire.
Sawa combines animation, lighting, composition andediting to position his work in a territory midway between sculpture andpainting. His approach to the moving image – and to editing in particular –relates to the Russian film director Andrei Tarkovsky's idea of “sculpting intime” in that it is non-linear, with different points of view and layers ofmeaning brought together in sequences of images that are multifaceted, almostlike sculptural objects. When installing his work, however, he draws on morepainterly concerns, composing and filling spaces with images and objects tocreate various densities and rhythms akin to brush strokes on a canvas. Heconstantly tries to push the boundary of what moving images installed in spacecan do by exploring the unique sense of time and place they can create.