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“The Magic Mountain” [2021–22]



Sitting in a small boat that drifts along aimlessly on a river in a landscape like those in shan shui (Chinese-style landscape paintings), the artist’s alter ego reflects on secluding himself from society, and seceding from worldly matters. While seeing living free from the restrictions of society and its systems as his own declaration of intent, he struggles in the face of the difficulties this involves. When the artist’s alter ego visits a virtual club, he feels dissatisfied with the artificialness of sharing a space in a virtual environment, and the temporary sympathy he experiences.

This installation combines a movie like a video game unfurling in 3-D environments that imitate the world of shan shui and the imaginary environment of a virtual club, interlocked with stage lighting set up in a real space. The title of this work was borrowed from Thomas MANN’s novel “The Magic Mountain,” and considering that it was made in 2021, it reflects the process of gradually becoming introspective as a result of the various confusion and separation during the secluded lifestyle imposed by the spread of COVID-19.

In this new age of worldwide pandemic, we have come to live with half forced limitations regarding traveling and meeting people, which almost felt as if the future illustrated in a dystopian novel had become reality. While withdrawing to his room and refraining from meeting others, that environment began to appear to the artist like it was the outside of the world (even though knowing that he can’t leave the world completely), which he came to interpret as a place for thinking about “possible ways other than suppression and seclusion.” The work on display here will be updated in accordance with future developments of the world situation.

3D Modelling Support: HIRATA Toraji
2D Design Support: TANIGUCHI Shoko



List of Works