JCC SingaporeJCC Singapore


The special exhibition was held from February 3rd-16th with the Japan Creative Centre (JCC) as its main venue. The JCC is located inside the Japanese embassy in Singapore as a hub for spreading Japanese culture. The timing coincided with the Singapore Biennale, which features works by Asian artists in various major museums and galleries, and drew further attention to this exhibition.

Artist Talks

Special talks by participating artists were organized in two parts on the afternoon of Saturday 4th February. Shoko Ebihara and Sarah Choo Jing, two female artists of the same generation, one from Japan and the other from Singapore, took part in Session One and talked about frames and compositions with respect to the exhibition’s landscape theme. Ebihara emphasized the great importance of the frame, saying the first thing she does when creating a work is to decide what frame to use. Sarah explained that she goes to great lengths with the digital technology to make her moving images feel natural within her given frame.

Session 2 featured planning directors Kensuke Sembo and Yae Akaiwa of “exonemo” and Tadasu Takamine. exonemo and Takakime first explained the history of their own productions and then moved on to the questions of how to choose materials and media and the great importance of thinking about how each work should reach beyond the frame.

Screening of Animated Future Films

A combined total of five animated future films was screened on the two consecutive Sundays of February 5th and 12th at Shaw Theatre Lido in the heart of Orchard Road. The screenings included Your Name (Kimi no Na wa), already a big hit in Singapore, and the Singaporean premiere of In This Corner of the World(Kono Sekai no Katasumi ni). The screenings were hugely popular and all seats were taken quickly after their announcement on the official website.


Planning director: exonemo (SEMBO Kensuke, AKAIWA Yae)

We are presently based in New York for art and new media research. In undertaking to work on this exhibition, we set up a planning triangle between the Western countries, Japan and Singapore. In Singapore right now, we are seeing growing interest in the creative aspects of media arts, especially among the young, in a kind of “maker-based movement”. Japan has long been fascinated by the technology and may, in this sense, be considered to have had a head start. In the Western countries, conversely, rather than excessive faith in technology, the tendency is to view technology with a more critical eye. While examining the state of contemporary technology, (in this case, especially with reference to the Internet and smart phones), we sought not merely to heap unqualified praise on its qualities but also to select works with a critical awareness. Regarding the chosen theme, Landscapes, we chose works in the three categories of distant landscapes transformed by technology, newly emergent landscapes connected to the human body, and landscapes whose significance is changed by taking in the surrounding scenery. JCC, the venue, was located in the heart of the city but the Embassy windows look out on lush green grounds and this worked well for non-white-cube installation. Many young people visited the exhibition during the term. We selected works with an emphasis on movement and this meant all of them were hard to understand without the involvement of the viewer. Many branched out from the more usual focus on the “maker” and also from typical Japanese media arts. Seeing those young exhibition visitors, however, we could sense their eagerness to decipher the works. The media arts themselves are also still evolving and hard to pin down to a single definition and we believe this was a highly significant opportunity to present various approaches to media arts and, in this way, offer pointers for the further growth of art in the fertile ground of Singapore.

TSUDA Michiko

The work changes a lot depending on the space in the end, I think I got it right.


I want to carry on thinking how my work and photos will evolve elsewhere not only in Japan.

Sarah CHOO Jing

This is my first time I can be a part of the exhibition with Japanese artists, and I’m the one from Singapore.
It is very interesting as well to see how similar our works are.
How similar my work and their works.
And also yet, there are certain differences between our works.


There’s the relationship between the media and the background.
The borders have been blurred and it was fun.
Making these discoveries by myself now I hope everyone will notice the same things as me.
Special Exhibition in Singapore on the Theme of Landscapes: New vision through multiple windows

A special exhibition Landscapes: New vision through multiple windows will be held at the Japan Creative Centre at the Japanese Embassy in Singapore from Friday, 3rd-18th February, 2017. The exhibition’s directors are the artist exonemo’s Kensuke Sembo and Yae Akaiwa, who have engaged in many experimental projects since starting out in 1996. This exhibition at the Japan Creative Centre, the hub for disseminating Japanese culture in Singapore, takes ‘Landscapes: New vision through multiple windows’ as its theme, and selected art works are displayed. Japanese feature animation films will also be screened at Shaw House Lido Theatre.


Venue:Japan Creative Centre


[2015 / Graphic art / 19th Art Division Jury Selection]

The artist hires a professional photographer from the local area to take her picture in a suit on a platform used for group photographs of travelers in sightseeing areas. Neither negatives nor data remain as the artwork is the process of ordering, purchasing, and receiving a touristic picture. The artist looks like an icon in these photographs, all of which have essentially the same basic structure, and inserts herself into various landscapes all over Japan.
*Souvenir photos of Singapore will be shown alongside the Japanese photo exhibition.

Angelica VERDAN

[2015 / Video work / 19th Art Division Jury Selection]

Double Click to Open analyzes the form and function of the cursor by removing it from the digital world and placing it in the physical one. The video shows a cursor projected on an image of a closed door, but the doors do not open even if double-clicked. The film explores the human relationship with technology and interface, revealing how we have come to expect various interactions with all types of interfaces.
(3 min. 41 sec.)

Sarah CHOO Jing

[2015 / Video installation / 19th Art Division Jury selection]

Waiting for the Elevator is a multimedia installation that depicts a composite of documented events, projected across the Esplanade Tunnel in Singapore. Building on normally unnoticed, trivial and repetitive actions, the artist reflects upon the social purposes of the “void decks” in Singapore. The composited panorama ultimately exists as a non-space; an accumulation of fragments over time.
(5 min. 22 sec.)


[2012 / Digital photo]


[Artist selected at 14th Art Division Jury selection]

Each landscape is a present space which bears the accumulated traces of those who live within it; a layer laid down by their actions. Networks connect deposited memories by invisible lines of sight using various landscape photographs, computer-made maps and desktop archives generated from individual viewpoints.

100100 views of Mount Fuji

[2008-2010 / Digital photo]


[Artist selected at 9th Art Division Jury selection]

The work 100100 Views of Mount Fuji reverts to webcams available on the Internet. From 2008 to 2010 I archived the image data of a camera, which transmits every three minutes a live image of Mount Fuji. The images appear as a modern version of the images of Hokusai, a version of the 21st century: a fast, unmistakable and unfiltered live transmission.

Popular Screen Sizes


[2011 / Installation]

Rafaël Rozendaal is interested in how mirrors retain both metaphorical and literal meanings for reflection as well as pertain a transience and reliance upon light and movement. Popular Screen Sizes (60”, 55”, 46”, 40”, 32”, 27”, 24”, 21”, 17”, 15”, 13”, 10”, 7”, 3.5”) by Rafaël Rozendaal operates as a reflection on contemporary lifestyles and the extent to which these involve our interface with screens, as well as a mirror to the immediate environment and the viewer.

Stream 2014


[2014 / Video work]

Stream is a work that explores the well known analogy of water flow and the flow of data on the internet. The structure and movement in the browser window becomes a rigid framework that contains and shifts an array of found images and video of water. Waterfalls, torrents, livers, creeks and streams of data flow down the screen. An interplay of fluidity and rigidness.
(1 min. 20 sec.)



[2011, reconstruction 2017]

This work consists only of a picture frame made from an oil-based modeling clay. It was displayed as a displaced frame together with a blanket laid out like a canvas at the big Too Far to See exhibition at the Yokohama Museum of Art. Whereas picture frames traditionally have the role of highlighting and completing a picture, this work uses modeling clay which, with its flexible and unfixed shapes, is more usually chosen for the preliminary models. Everyone has used it in their childhood and this application of a clay which retains clear finger imprints thereby focuses the attention on the frame to question the nature of both media and the work itself.


[2011, reconstruction 2017]

You would come back there to see me again the following day.

TSUDA Michiko

[2016 / Installation]

The frames hung in the air from the ceiling look like those of paintings or photographs but do not have such images inside. When you get closer to the frames, you find there are three different structures in these frames. Some have mirrors inserted, some have screens onto which the live view of the exhibition space captured by video cameras is projected, and some have nothing inside. Each frame is hung in a position according to a geometric rule.
Once you enter the space, you will get confused and be unable to recognize where you are, standing surrounded by all these frames. You will see the other corner of the exhibition space in the back of a frame. Beside another frame, you may find someone who should not be there. Or you will find yourself inside the other frame. Welcome to the labyrinth where images swap with one another, between here and there.

Fluttering Frame

[2013 / Video Work]


[Artist selected at 16th Art Division and 17th Entertainment Division Jury selection]

Fluttering Frame is a crowd-sourced video work created by 54 participants from 31 countries. It was aired on Japanese public broadcasting NHK's program Techne - The visual workshop. NHK typically airs a video of a Japanese flag at the end of each broadcasting day. The artists asked participants from all over the world to air this footage in their living rooms, and collected these video pieces including the living rooms, animating the flying flag by combining fragments from each video. The project started with as a simply query about the relevance of projecting a national framework like this in the age of the internet.


[2011 / Manga / 15th Manga Division Grand Prize]

The story is set in a time when the whole of the Earth has been designated as a nature reserve and it is not permitted to descend to the Earth's surface, so humans live in buildings high up in the sky, at a level of 35,000 meters. The protagonist, Mitsu, was born and raised in this gigantic ring system, which is divided into upper, middle and lower levels. Just as Mitsu graduates from junior high school, he takes the same job as his late father, "ring system window cleaner." It is a meticulously-depicted story of Mitsu's growth as he gains in confidence and pride in his work through encounters with his workplace mentor, his neighbors and his clients.

ISO Mitsuo

[2007 / Animated TV series / 11th Animation Division Excellence Award]

The scene is Daikoku-shi in the near future, 202X. A wearable computer denno megane through which the wearer can enjoy a cyber world has a great run among children. In these circumstances, OKONOGI Yuko who is moved into Daikoku-shi experiences a series of strange incidents.

SCREENING: Den-noh Coil SP (90 min.)
Date & Time: Saturday 11th and 18th February 14:00-15:30
Place: JCC exhibition space

Japanese Landscapes from Manga and Animation

Comic and animation appreciation space will be in the JCC Library to introduce Japanese landscapes through comics and animations.


[Ethereal landscapes]

Saturn Apartments, IWAOKA Hisae
Children of the Sea, IGARASHI Daisuke

[Japanese city]


[Landscapes that possibly once existed in Japan]

Ōoku: The Inner Chambers, YOSHINAGA Fumi
Vagabond, INOUE Takehiko / Original author: YOSHIKAW Eiji
Thermae Romae, YAMAZAKI Mari
A Distant Neighborhood,TANIGUCHI Jiro

[Visible things / Invisible things]

Oyasumi Pun Pun, ASANO Inio

[Things visible from the panel layout]

sen-nen-gahou, KYO Machiko
In This Corner of the World, KOUNO Fumiyo
Town of Evening Calm, Country of Cherry Blossoms,KOUNO Fumiyo


Den-noh COIL, ISO Mitsuo
Animated TV series / 25 min. x 26 episodes

Japan Media Arts Festival Screening Programmes
“Award-winning Program 2016”
“Focus in Japan Selection 2016”
“Beyond the Technology”
“Portrait of Japanese Animation”
“The Medium as Somatic Impulse—Drawing Animations”


Landscapes: New vision through multiple windows

In recent years, we have become connected to the world through our computer and smartphone displays, discovering reality through these screens. It is as if the display screens are “windows” onto new landscapes. Thinking about windows, however, we realize that the conventional media of television as well as printed materials such as photographs, paintings, and actual windows in walls likewise have the function of connecting the viewer to a “landscape beyond”. In particular, the miniaturization/portability of devices in recent years and practicality of continuous Internet connection have drastically increased the time we spend gazing through these windows and the images of the world outside that we picture in our minds are being reset accordingly. The Internet has made the spreading world beyond (such as Japan as viewed from Singapore) seem as close as if we have actually been to these places ourselves. But how far are the landscapes we see through these digital windows actually linked to the real world? This exhibition reexamines the modern global landscapes now viewed not from windows on our walls but through windows in our pockets. This is an experiment in which we seek to discover the whereabouts of the world we sense to be real by reconsidering the landscapes spreading out before our eyes. By gathering works which examine this moment in time and interpret the future from wide-ranging perspectives, this exhibition reveals the diverse possibilities of the media arts.

Planning director: exonemo (SEMBO Kensuke, AKAIWA Yae)


Venue: Japan Creative Center

【Artists’ Talk: Session 1 Landscapes of Japan and Singapore】
Artists: EBIHARA Shoko × Sarah CHOO Jing

Date & Time: Saturday 4th February 13:00-14:30
A talk by two artists of the same sex and generation, one from Japan and the other from Singapore, who each view their own country and city from new perspectives.

【Artists’ Talk: Session 2 Landscape from unstable window】
Artists:TAKAMINE Tadasu × exonemo

Date & Time: Saturday 4th February 15:00-16:30
Tadasu Tamakime exhibits a picture frame made from an unfixed material, modeling clay; exonemo, “Fluttering Frame”, an unstable, flickering video frame. What do they see through this shared theme of the unstable window? A talk by two artists who take a critical approach to the media and its frames.

【Guide Tour by Planning Director, exonemo】
Date & Time: Friday 3rd February 19:30-

【SCREENING: Den-noh Coil SP】
Date & Time: Saturday 11th and 18th February 14:00-15:30
Place: Exhibition space


Screening venue: Shaw Theatres Lido 5

Admission: Free

The screenings will feature a rich program of renowned, full-length animation films set in beautiful, timeless Japanese town and landscapes, all made for cinema release by popular Japanese directors. This is an animation journey through the Japanese landscape.

Date: Sunday 5th February 12:30-

Your Name.

[2016 / Animated feature film]


[Artist selected at 6th, 9th, 17th Animation Division Jury selection]

Two high school students Mitsuha and Taki have never met each other and live at different places in Japan. One day, Mitsuha wakes up in a body of a young man and believes that she is dreaming. The next day, she turns normal and finds out from her friend that she has been behaving very strangely yesterday. On a certain day of the week, she finds herself waking up in the body of the same young man, and after a series of events, she concludes that she and the boy, who is actually Taki, have been switching bodies quite often. They try to find out the mysterious cause behind their body swap and soon discover that there is an important life-changing reason for it.
(1 h. 46 min.)

Date: Sunday 5th February 14:50-

HARA Keiichi

[2014-2015 / Animated feature film / 19th Animation Division Jury selection]

This is a feature-length adaptation of the manga Sarusuberi by SUGIURA Hinako, a researcher of Edo Era customs. It is set in the town of old Edo, a community in Edo that is always emotionally turbulent, including fires and troubles with fairies. The story centers on O-Ei (later known as KATSUSHIKA Oi), the daughter of leading ukiyoe woodblock print artist KATSUSHIKA Hokusai, and depicts the lives of people in Edo that also have relevance for us today.
(1 h. 29 min.)

Date: Sunday 5th February 16:50-


[2014 / Animated feature film / 18th Animation Division Excellence Award]

The setting is 1945 on Shikotan, a tiny island off the cost of Hokkaido, which has remained virtually untouched by the rage of war. There innocently live ten-year-old Junpei and his seven-year-old Kanta. But with Japan’s defeat on August 15th, great change comes to their lives. While everybody on the island is expecting American troops to arrive anytime, it is the Red Army that Island on Shikotan instead. Before they know it, the national borders have changed and for the Japanese community, a new life with the Soviet citizens who have moved onto the island begins. The film follows the absurdity and tragedy of war through Junpei’s eyes, depicting friendship among children blossoming beyond language and cultural barriers. Based on true events, this animated feature film was made by an international team including people from Japan. Russia, Argentina, South Korea, Estonia, United States and Italy.
(1 h. 41 min.)

Date: Sunday 12th February 15:00-

In This Corner of the World

[2016 / Animated feature film]


[Excellence award winner at 14th Animation Division and artist selected at 5th Jury selection]

In This Corner of the World tells the story of the adolescent Suzu, who in 1944 moves to the small town of Kure in Hiroshima to live with her husband’s family. Suzu’s life is thrown into chaos when her town is bombed during World War II. Her perseverance and courage, however, underpin this heart-warming and inspirational tale of the everyday challenges faced by the Japanese in the midst of a violent, war-torn country.
(2 h. 9 min.)

Date: Sunday 12th February 17:40-


[2013 / Animated feature film / 17th Animation Division Jury Selection]

One rainy day Takao, a high school student aiming to become a shoemaker, encounters Yukino, an enigmatic older girl, drinking a can of beer alone in Japanese garden. Without commitment, they continue to meet only on rainy days, gradually forming a bond… With modern-day Tokyo as its stage, this is a subtle drama telling a tale with an expressive style only achievable through animation.
(46 min. 2 sec.)


JCC Singapore “Landscapes: New vision through multiple windows”
Period: Friday, 3rd to Saturday 18th February, 2017 Tue-Sat (10:00 – 18:00)
*Opening: at 19:00 on 3rd February
Venue: Japan Creative Centre (4Nassim Road,Singgre 258372)
Screening venue: Shaw Theatres Lido 5
(350, Orchard Road, 5th Floor, Shaw House, Singapore 238868)
Admission: Free
Organizer: Japan Media Arts Festival / Agency for Cultural Affairs, Government of Japan
Co-organizer: Japan Creative Center, Embassy of Japan in Singapore
Planning Director: exonemo (SEMBO Kensuke, AKAIWA Yae)
Project Advisor: FURUKAWA Taku (Animation artist)
MOURI Yoshitaka (Professor, Graduate School of Global Arts,Tokyo University of the Art)
Administration: NHK International, Inc.