16 sounds of Moriya / 2017
Humorous yet highly political/critical, I was drawn to Djamo’s work and its intentional use of stereotypes of his home country. His proposal for ARCUS Project was stimulating in its inventiveness―he would ask the residents of Moriya City to imagine a fictional character and develop a story about this character set in the year 2028.
Daniel Nicolae Djamo’s work is very diverse, examining the changes that took place in his home country of Romania after joining the EU as well as its association with immigrants, and stories revolving around his family history.
During his residency, Djamo conducted a workshop with participants aged between 16 and 30 imagining what will happen in the year 2028. The artist asked the participants to devise a range of stories based on the hypothetical scenario that a chain of conflicts arises, forcing people living in Japan to migrate overseas. Of these stories written on paper, 16 were selected and are exhibited during Open Studios. The artist has conducted similar workshops all over the world and is building an archive of the stories created by participants. In addition, Djamo presents a documentary-style video made in the manner of a publicity film in which the artist plays a reporter telling the world about the hidden charms of Moriya, and also exhibits stones purporting to be meteorites the artist received from various people around Japan.
These very different projects nonetheless share a highly unusual nature of narrative that seems like the kind of thing one might find online. Djamo is interested in how the power of the human imagination is able to construct even more unique stories. Simultaneously, the style of his artistic activities also reflects the perspective on the world of this artist who is interested in social issues such as immigration. (Kenichi Kondo, curator, Mori Art Museum, Tokyo, Japan)
Studio talk coordinated by Fumio Nanjo (director of Mori Art Museum) and Kenichi Kondo (curator of Mori Art Museum), ARCUS Project, Moriya, Japan
photo credit: Hajime Kato & ARCUS Project
"16 sounds of paper" workshop coordinator, ARCUS Project, Moriya, Ibaraki Prefecture, Japan - with translation support from Aruma Toyama, Lisa Maria Coriu and The Romanian Embassy in Tokyo (September - October 2017)