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Hiroyuki OKI: The Dawn of 21st Century Philosophy — Fiction 3
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Published: October 02 2008

Diary of Matsumae-kun's Love (2008), video Image provided by ARATANIURANO copy right(c) 2008 ARATANIURANO

May (2004-2008), video, produced by FOU production Image provided by ARATANIURANO copy right(c) 2008 ARATANIURANO

Hiroyuki Oki started to make video work in the late 1980s, while he was studying at the Department of Architecture in the Faculty of Engineering at the University of Tokyo. From 1991 he was based in Kochi Prefecture, and following key early works such as "Tarch Trip" (1992-93), his work "HEAVEN-6-BOX" (1994-95) won the NETPAC Prize at the 45th Internationale Filmfestspiele Berlin in 1995. Thereafter he has been invited to show at many film festivals, including the Sundance Film Festival, the International Film Festival Rotterdam, and the Yamagata International Documentary Film Festival, where his work has been received with great critical acclaim. His work is not limited to video, however: it encompasses live screenings, installation, bodily performance, drawing and painting, and he has taken part in many exhibitions in Japan and abroad. Having been featured in "Art/Domestic Temperature of the Time" (Setagaya Art Museum) in 1999, "GAME OVER" (Watari Museum of Contemporary Art, 2000), "How Latitudes Become Forms" (Walker Art Center, USA, 2003), "Roppongi Crossing" (Mori Art Museum, 2004), the Sharjah Biennial (2007), "Out of the Ordinary" (Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, USA, 2007), and "The Door into Summer: The Age of Micropop" (Art Tower Mito, 2007), Oki is an increasingly recognized figure in the contemporary art scene. Oki, who studied architecture at university, says:
"Even now I consider myself an architect. The kind of architecture I want to create is a general means of expression that incorporates people's lives and the relationships between them, and it is in trying to activate this idea that I have come to consider film. Films are capable of handling any variety of subject matter, from people and objects to time, so it is close to my conception of architecture." The six video works that are on display in this exhibition present an outline of his activity of the past five years. Shot over long periods of time in locations and communities as diverse as China, Tibet, Arizona, Israel, Kochi, Hokkaido and Tokyo, these video works show people's livelihoods, religions and politics, the beauty of nature, the urban environment, midnight monologues, the laughing faces of youth, music and sexuality - myriad instants of daily life that, finely edited into a distinctive, musical score-like time-sheet, and using techniques such as overlapping, close-ups and overexposure, have been poetically woven together to create a unique sense of floatation and tension. Different from diary-like private films and so-called film fiction, Oki's video work makes unique use of space and time that is neither rooted in the ordinary nor the extraordinary; it is the architecture that he thinks and feels, composed of is its own philosophical, religious and universal outlook. In the rays of light that emanate from his work, the viewer's feelings are set free, shaken up and made aware of the possibility and richness of the world that exists within the everyday. Oki says that he would like to create opportunities for people to start afresh with a 21st century philosophy, and that this is best achieved with video. *All text provided by ARATANIURANO

Last Updated on October 04 2008

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