dancing with kaoru and my-other-self – 同時に踊る、もう1人の私

Nakanojo biennale - Nakanojo (JP) | 09.09.2023 - 09.10.2023

The installation consists of two videos in which two characters dance in parallel to the same music:

On the right, Kaoru Saiki, an inhabitant of the small town of Nakanojo (Japan, Gunma province) dances the “bon odori”, a traditional dance whose style varies in the different regions of Japan and which is generally performed in groups, during the O bon (お盆) festivals, intended to honor the ancestors. It is believed that their spirits return on this occasion to visit their loved ones.

On the left, in mirror image, a masked creature sketches the same choreography. This creature wears a mask that in some ways recalls the masks of the Lötschental. In these mountains of central Switzerland, the Tschägättä are characters who appear in February during Carnival to frighten passers-by. The origins of this age-old tradition are still a mystery. The small town of Nakanojo is also located in a mountainous region, deep in the Gunma province. As in Switzerland, the relationship with the mountains is very strong and forms part of the collective imagination.
The project thus forges cultural and emotional links between two cultures and two generations, transcending borders and cultural clichés.

link to video

Direction : Sophie Guyot
Dance : Kaoru Saiki.
Music : Nakanojo Ondo (voices : Kazuo Takamine & Kazuko Takahashi/ shamisen: Toyoshizu)
Shooting, editing : Léonie Guyot & Lorane Hochstätter

The project is supported by Ville de Lausanne/Fonds des Arts Plastiques