Dislocate in Yokohama

April 26, 2009
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Curated and produced by Emma Ota, Dislocate is an annual seminar and exhibition addressing locality, arts and technology. I took part in its 2008 edition, and its seminar on “Construction of Place”. Having already addressed relationshiop of location based media arts practices with social networks, I further argued in my presentation for a viewpoint that perhaps the social interaction defines the work, and relationhip with place, rather than a more direct, mimetic sense of “place” to be aquired through an lbm project. Both Proboscis and Blast Theory presented at this event, and the more I listened, the more convinced I became about the importance of social contact vis a vis relationshiop of place. Not that this is a new idea, but perhaps there is something in “placing” that on top, as a decisive plane of experience rather than how one perceives a physical architecture or a narrative history of a given location.

Lushan Liu performed with an outfit full of QR tags. By scanning one and uploading to a local service, you would get a poetic, narrative response.

Lushan Liu performed with an outfit full of QR tags. By scanning one and uploading to a local service, you would get a poetic, narrative response.

At ICC, there was an opening of Young Korean and Japanese media artists.  Machikio Kusahara has addresssed so called “device art”; I found this exhibition to have similar tendencies, with a focus  on “visual consumables”… they are not necessarily devices, as they do not function in any deviceful way. They are just part of object – consumer culture, reassembled in ways that invite the user for a smile, an exprience of a new arrangement. But beyond that, most of the work, though produced extremely well, did not open up as contoversial or remarkably challenging.

Dislocate took place at a community arts center in Yokohama called ZAIM. Yokohama itself has worked a lot to gentrify different parts of town with art and design. This was evident with the Bienniale that was on simultaneously.

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