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Art installation “Fantastic Voyage” (Sebastian Masuda): Maximal imagination in a minimal world!

I was invited to the “Fantastic Voyage” experimental art installation.

 

When, due to the COVID-19 lockdown, many of Seba-san’s (Sebastian Masuda’s) projects disappeared, he followed his heart in visiting Enryakuji Temple on Kyoto’s Mt. Hiei to ask himself what we could do with art.

He says that the monks he saw there continued to “think” day after day. It was then that he had the idea for this installation!

 

“Now (in an isolated world),
Imagining a future to be,
Is the sole positive act.”

 

Self-quarantine is an extremely minimal form of living. Without the coronavirus, humans could have moved freely around the world. But, because of it, everything stopped.

In this art installation, visitors enter a shelter big enough to fit one person and lose themselves in thought.

This may be “Gordian knot” for Seba-san. It made me think about the possibility of achieving the maximum by way of the minimum.

 

When it comes to advancing civilization, human imagination is the only thing we can rely on. Perhaps it is safe to say that this is where the power of art lies.

 

I was told that the installation is still in its experimental stage, but the quality and level of completeness were quite high. I look forward to the day when the work will be released to the public as a work of experiential art.

 

Thanks to Nao Tazaki for inviting me to attend such a wonderful event!

By the way, “Fantastic Voyage” is also the title of a 1966 science fiction film.

 

P.S.: The Gordian Knot is a legend of Phrygian Gordium (located in Anatolia) associated with Alexander the Great. It is a metaphor for solving an intractable problem using a bold solution that no one else has thought of.