“What happened in and around Japan between 1900 and 1945? Please tell us in as much detail as possible.” This is the question artist Meiro Koizumi posed to people on the streets of Japan. To be expected perhaps, the answers vary from insightful to downright embarrassing. Basing the entire visual composition on the respondents’ mouths presented in extreme abject close-ups, the installation preserves the anonymity of the individual but brings to bear a nation torn in how to reconcile with their own imperialist past.
In what the artist calls "the image of void in the collective memory", what is revealed is at best willful ignorance and at worst clouded judgments based on a distrust of facts. As post-truth politics appears to be taking over the world, Koizumi’s work is a timely reminder of the importance of memory in bringing together a nation no matter how painful it is to remember.
Thu 26 Jan to Sat 4 Feb, 11:00-20:30, KINO Rotterdam, free admission
For all exhibitions, performances, video works and (interactive) installations, also see IFFR.com/expo.