15th Art Division New Face Award
UEKI Hideharu [Japan]
This is a work that comically films scenes that everyone has imagined when on board a train. The character, a white figure synthesized against a blue background, bounds along over the roofs and telegraph poles in the landscape seen from the window of the train. This was actually shooted on a bullet train journey lasting about an hour, from Tokyo to Shizuoka, and was created by skillfully combining the leaping figure with a video of the same length.
Reason for Award
Playing with illusion while looking at a boring view from a train window
Japan’s urbanizing landscape has been reflected in the windows of the Shinkansen ever since it began service in 1964; the scenery that passes before a passenger’s eyes is truly cinematic. This work latches onto this idea of flowing landscape with a white human figure running alongside the Shinkansen from Tokyo Station to Shizuoka station. Passing through Japan’s endless, unbroken cityscape, the figure leaps from building to building and roof to roof, scurrying over railway lines and electrical wires, slipping easily through tunnels and even climbing Mt. Fuji when it appears near Shin-Fuji Station. Falling behind, moving away, sometimes even completely disappearing from the frame, this little intruder on the everyday landscape seems to humorously personify our ever-accelerating mobility times. This long-form video that radiates low-key appeal transforms a landscape growing more uniform across every region, and the lackluster scenery of our lives that is buried in the routine background, into something heartwarming.