2121 Design Sight

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Japan is at the forefront of a lot of scenes: art, fashion, technology — but whenever I thought about these things, I always thought about them separately. It’s a very black-and-white way of thinking on my part, even though I know that art has so much to do with science! I think it’s easier to see art from a scientific perspective (since the mechanics of some installations are really so crazy), but a little harder to appreciate science as an art. But an exhibit at 2121 Design Sight is trying to change that perspective:

Motion design is a form of art that has brought “movement” to expressions. The techniques of motion design have helped to spread vehicle control systems, map applications, communications technologies and SNS, supporting our stress-free, convenient daily lives. They also enable dynamic depictions in products, graphics and video images, creating even richer expressions that appeal to our sensibilities … Seeing one’s idea take shape and begin moving – the genuine joy of witnessing such moments may be said to represent the enjoyment of creating itself.

Huh! I never really thought about technology like that. I guess if you boil it down, creation is really at the basis of all advancements in technology. Somebody had to have been imaginative and creative to think of the things we now have in our super plugged-in society.

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A little hard to see, but a spinning mirror was casting all these broken shadows down this hallway

It was a little difficult to get pictures for this exhibit because it relied so much on motion, that pictures make it all look very static. But all of the pieces were collaborations between inventors, artists, and even students!

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2121 Design Sight looks quite short/small on the outside, but the interior has much more depth than appears

The building itself is pretty small, but has really interesting architecture. From the outside, it almost looks like an envelope, but when you walk in, the building drops down in two flights of stairs and the exhibit is mostly underground (the ground floor has a gift shop that is free to explore, but with only some sneak peeks of what’s on the lower levels).

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One of my favorite parts of the exhibit: distortion of light projections through curtains

There was also a white field of small triangular structures that would point to wherever you pointed, if you stood in the center. But I couldn’t get a picture because this was the most popular of the pieces and the line was very long… but a bunch of kids were having fun, so at least it was being properly enjoyed and appreciated!

2121 Design Sight, though small, has made me change my mind about the relationship of art and science. I think I’ve started to prefer the smaller spaces that house exhibits for shorter periods of time, as opposed to big museums that have large collections for about half-year periods. Perhaps the essence of wabi-sabi?

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