Takeshi Fujimura Solo Exhibition
“When Singing Someone’s Theme Song”
KANA KAWANISHI GALLERY
4-7-6 Shirakawa, Koto-ku, Tokyo 135-0021 JAPAN
Saturday, June 6th, 2020 - Saturday, July 11th, 2020
*period extended until Saturday, July, 18th, 2020
(open until 18:00 on the final day)
Tuesdays through Saturdays, 13:00 - 19:00
(closed on Sundays, Mondays, and National Holidays)
(presented by ARCHI HATCH)
Postcard (Rewriting a New Letter)
from the series Unreadable Letter/New Letter
2020 | replicated postcard (offset print) | 148 × 100 mm
© Takeshi Fujimura, courtesy KANA KAWANISHI GALLERY
KANA KAWANISHI GALLERY is pleased to announce the opening of Takeshi Fujimura’s solo exhibition, When Singing Someone’s Theme Song, from Saturday, June 6th, 2020.
Fujimura has consistently created works around the theme “how we understand the experiences of others” and how those experiences are shared in ways viewers could feel them with actuality, mainly in the medium of photography and video.
For instance, in his ongoing video work Repeating the Same Question / Remembering the Same Thing Repeatedly (Why Did You Get Divorced?) (2014-), Fujimura continuously asks the same question “why did you get divorced?” to the same person over six years, capturing the varied words spun out from the same person each moment. With the time passing by, the sequence of scenes, where the interviewee comments different reasons using different words each time she is asked, reflects the fluidity of the relationship between an event and the person involved, while it also requires the listener to change one’s understanding each time in response.
In this exhibition, When Singing Someone’s Theme Song, Fujimura will depict the events and motifs he faces on a daily basis with photographs, videos, and installations featuring text.
Postcards with its letters almost vanishing by the time the artist had received them. The left hand of his son in which is shaped differently from that of the artist’s. A little quest regarding a familiar natural phenomenon. A dialogue in regard to a friend’s divorce. While the origin of his motifs become even more private, Fujimura showcases in this exhibition a record of his varied attempts of understanding different events in a groping yet explicit manner as an unnatural replay.
Our instinctive desire towards mutual understanding and its impossibility. We cordially look forward to welcoming all to this occasion where Fujimura will “sing someone’s theme song” slightly out of tune.
Repeating the Same Question / Remembering the Same Thing Repeatedly (Why Did You Get Divorced?)
2014-2020 | HD video, sound
© Takeshi Fujimura, courtesy KANA KAWANISHI GALLERY
Desafinado✴︎ / Where Are We Now?
The global disaster caused by the invisible threat (the infective disease) will inevitably affect our senses of distance.
It has been a while since the monolithic device (starting with the iPhone) made of glass and metal suddenly appeared at the beginning of the 21st century and became an indispensable item for our daily lives. The device dramatically changed the sense of distance between people, things, and information. It allowed us to instantly find people from around the world, and acquire images and information across the globe. It is as if the world was in the palm of our hand. However, events occurring beyond our understanding and imagination give us astonishment and surprise, and the world we thought we had drawn close to ourselves instantly slips out of our fingers and goes afar.
“Seeing is believing” is a proverb that states the truth could be immediately understood by looking at matters closely, instead of relying on many heard stories. This word, which pervades by word of mouth, overwrites the notion of truth that we hold on a daily basis. Its roots go deeply into the traditional ideas of Western Europe. An understanding of truth is gained by a train of thoughts of correctly recognizing the subject matter through a transcendental/objective perspective (i.e., religious, philosophical, scientific, social, etc.). At many times, the truth is imagined as though there is one certain goal. However, it has been difficult to hide the flaws of such perception and has been a while since words such as post-truth and fake news have been commonly heard.
Now, Takeshi Fujimura has been exploring with his works around the query of what the real things are and how to reach those understandings. And, by weaving them through events, communication, photographs, images, words, and other mediums, his creative activities have made the sceneries of those questions visible. For example, there is a work by Fujimura titled Repeating the Same Question / Remembering the Same Occurrence Repeatedly (Why Did You Get Divorced?) (2014-). The spoken word by the person directly involved in the event shows a slight drift each time she is repeatedly questioned. It brings into the open that the number of truths is never limited to one and the truth is something ambiguous. That, however, is not a setback toward the quest for truth. The truth is something that could be only seen by illuminating it from countless viewpoints, to begin with.
The process of adapting the recognizer to the recognition object is actually as though dancing from one viewpoint to another. A problem is recognized only after going around the problem on the quest for truth.
(Vil´em Flusser) [Translated from Japanese.]✴︎✴︎
While the world and the traditional notion of truth dissolves, Fujimura's work, which rewrites our attitude towards the world, seems to lure the viewer into a project that cannot be overlooked. Not loudly, but modestly and strongly, they illuminate the path to awaken a new power to imagine the world.
Although Fujimura’s singing voice is clear, perhaps it is slightly "out of tune." While he listens to the singing voices of the subjects (i.e., the sender of the disappearing postcard, his beloved son, etc.), he does not simply go in unison with them, but instead, imagines what might have happened in their realm, and asks himself how to possibly understand them. In other words, it is a process of seeking distance and position. The attempt could be sometimes delicate and sometimes bold, with fluctuations in tone and timing. That was why it resembled the word and the song, “Desafinado.”
How should we measure the distance towards the world and between other people while we live on?
Let's walk around this question a little while listening to the song by Fujimura humming by our side.
Masafumi Fukagawa (Curator/Critic)
Desafinado is the title of a song composed by Antônio Carlos Jobim with lyrics written by Newton Mendonça. “Desafinado” is a Portuguese word that means “slightly out of tune” in English. It was also the first song that used the word “bossa nova” in its lyrics.
✴︎✴︎ Flusser, Vil´em. Translated by Junichi Murakami. 1997. Tekuno ko-do no tanjo, Tokyo: University of Tokyo Press, pp. 274.
A desperate desire to understand something that you are never able to.
My son gave me his hand as if he was giving me a sweet.
From the right hand to the left, I widely opened my mouth, pretending to take a bite.
As I tried eating his left hand, he told me “Stop, I don’t have it.”
This event lays in between the two experiences regarding his left hand.
To him, he thinks he lacks the fingers on his left hand for me to bite.
To me, they surely exist there right in front of me.
How can we reach and understand the experiences of others?
A letter arrived in my mailbox with its letters almost gone with the rain.
My friend answers me with different words each time I ask the same question.
A naturally falling snow seems to be something different from the snow that I have thrown.
What should I do?
To sing someone’s theme song slightly out of tune.
To let a song go on, while they never overlap with each other.
Our understanding is always groping and explicit.
And, always acquired through an unnatural replay.
Takeshi Fujimura was born in 1980. He received his B.A. in literature at Waseda University, and a diploma at Tokyo College of Photography. His major projects include Reading “Mrs. Dalloway” in Woolf’s Way (2015, BankART Studio NYK, Kanagawa, Japan) and others. Solo exhibitions as the artist unit “Takeshi Fujimura & Sayaka Uchino” include While Two Dispute, the Third Enjoys (2014, Kawasaki City Museum, Kanagawa, Japan), Lesson for Reconsideration (Forming a Project and Event) (2013, mujikobo, Kanagawa, Japan), and UNDER35 GALLERY Takeshi Fujimura & Sayaka Uchino (2011, BankART Life 3 Shin Minatomura, Kanagawa, Japan).