9. -13. September 2020


What is the benefit of an online festival?
How we can utilize this unfortunate but unique opportunity?
TOKYO GARDEN will be a place where we exhibit current Japanese artists’ works, but, will also be a chance to trace the origin of Japanese Media Art through talks, interviews and a sharing archive.
KEY: Online, 2020, TOKYO, CONTEXT, ARCHIVE, LIVE, Map the new world.

Seiichi Saito (JP)
Creative Director, Rhizomatiks
Director of TOKYO GARDEN, Japan Media Arts Festival Overseas Promotion

TOKYO GARDEN / Exhibition

  • Website

Black Aura Re-Reversal


Japanese lacquer Urushi is a natural resin paint that has been used in East Asia over 12,000 years. “between #4 Black Aura" is an attempt to approach the aesthetic quality of Urushi in virtual, moving back and forth between the real and virtual. The project was developed as an installation consisting of videos, photographs, and Urushi sculptures. This time, we have replaced the aesthetics of the Urushi to the virtual (online) world with a new circuit called “Black Aura Re-Reversal” to connect the reality and virtuality of Urushi.
Director’s message
One would accept change for the sake of not changing. Craft is appreciated when it is continuous, but it creates new possibilities when things change unintentionally. This work represents Urushi today, a traditional craft technique passed on to generations in Takaoka City, Toyama Prefecture. The field of media art is extending with such initiative.

© 2018 ReKOGEI

Inspired by the original work of:

between #4 Black Aura

23rd Japan Media Arts Festival / Art Division Excellence Award
Media installation

A project focusing on the aesthetic texture of lacquer that adopts 3DCG/3D printing technology to explore lacquer’s inherent charm from a technological perspective, while elaborating on its plasticity and production process. This work generates modeling data simulating the texture of lacquer. It then performs 3D collision simulations to elicit a form, such as a modeled object spearing a square textile, that would be difficult to reproduce with manual crafting. Output with a 3D printer, the data is brought to fruition as a lacquer sculpture with countless layers of lacquer coating and polishing manually applied by a lacquer artisan. The modeled lacquer is then photographed to replicate the 3DCG-rendered image’s composition, lighting, and so on. From a distance, the images thus photographed appear the same as those produced through rendering, yet subtle disparities can be detected upon closer inspection. These discrepancies form the basis of the work’s inquiry into lacquer’s intrinsic charm. As one installment of the "between" series, "Black Aura" aims to re-examine the techniques, history, and aesthetics of traditional crafts from a technological perspective to reinterpret the charm of lacquer.

  • © 2018 ReKOGEI

  • © Yuki Tsutsumi

  • © Yuki Tsutsumi

  • © Yuki Tsutsumi

  • ReKOGEI (JP)

    ReKOGEI is a collective community of traditional craftsmen, artists, engineers and designers. Since 2017, ReKOGEI have been actively practicing to reinterpret and reconstruct the history, aesthetics and techniques of traditional crafts through the perspective of contemporary technology, and our members are from across the spectrum. Their activities have been focused on lacquer in particular. Their "between" series of projects, which explore the appeal of lacquer through a technological perspective, include both artworks and product prototypes, and have been presented several outputs to date.

  • Tomoya Ishibashi (JP)

    Director, ReKOGEI
    Born in 1990. Studied life science and graduated from Waseda University Graduate School in 2014. Ishibashi has participated in Waseda University’s life and aesthetics platform metaPhorest since 2011. Ishibashi creates artistic works of objects with a historical and evolutionary scale, such as living things, life, languages, and crafts, to reveal hidden properties and structures from the viewpoint of modern technology and science.

between #4 Black Aura
Director: Tomoya Ishibashi (
Urushi: Mitsuhiro Kyoden / Modeler: Kotaro Shima / 3d designer: Yusuke Matsumoto / Algorithmic Designer: Junichiro Horikawa ( / Photographer: Masakazu Hirata / Retoucher : Michiko Nishio / Project Manager: Toshiyuki Numa ( / Designer: Takahisa Hashimoto ( / Engineer: Masaru Mizuochi ( / Project Manager: Yuta Hikichi / Copywriter: Kanako Shintaku (
Black Aura Re-Reversal
Web designer: Akiko Kyono
Web developer: Yuma Ohfusa (glow)