Having researched the history of coal mines and miners in Hitachi, Ibaraki Prefecture, OLTA with this game / playing installation work (the experience can be completed with either one alone, in any order) questions the “gods” believed in and the “labor” dedicated to them in the present Japan, which has passed from the world of mythology to the age of modernization, and has been swept up in the postponed Olympics and the normalized state of emergency after the nuclear accident in Fukushima.
This is a game work that takes as its theme the social groups that supported modernization in the harsh labor environment of mining, and reads modern and contemporary history from the life and customs there, or from the traditions of festivals rooted in the land. The audience can download the game themselves and experience it using their own PCs. Players meet nine residents who are trying to organize a festival. Using the “Hitachi Mine” (closed in 1981), which was one of the largest copper mines in Japan, the mining city of Hitachi (Ibaraki Prefecture), which developed from the Hitachi Mine, and the “Hitachi Furyu Mono,” a giant float and karakuri puppet show, as specific clues, the player walks around the terrestrial world, simulating a different world of “exploring life in a mine. Once the exploration is complete, the festival begins. The floats respond to the player’s voice and proceed into the darkness of the underground world.
Land of the Living GAME〈TRAILER〉
【Live talk①】Aida Family (Makoto Aida, Hiroko Okada, Torajiro Aida)
【Live talk②】Natsumi Aoyagi × Ryota Yamada
What kind of “mine” is the city in which we live? How do we use and are we made to use our bodies and words, where are we transported to, and what are we digging up and burying there as if that is what our lives are about? The audience inside the theater will be seated inside the installation, and the audience outside the theater will be looking inward through images, both experiencing a journey that opens up a new vision of nature/city/labor.
YPAM2021 Direction, KAAT Kanagawa Arts Theatre, Yokohama / Kobe Art Village Center, Hyogo / BUoY, Tokyo
1-3 KOBE ART VILLAGE CENTER, Photo: Takehiro Iikawa 2021
4 BUoY, Photo: Takehiro Iikawa 2021
5-7 KAAT Kanagawa Arts Theatre, Middle Studio, Photo: Hideto Maezawa
8 Photo: Kenji Agata 2021
Land of the Living (GAME)