TSUDA Michiko’s installation was placed on the space in front of the theater’s arced, overhanging stage typical of Showa-era architecture. There are two screens, two mirrors of the same size, and three empty frames in the space. Projected on the two screens is a performer who verbally announces her movements in 27 different phrases about walking (e.g., “My right foot is pushing down on the ground,” “The ground is soft,” “I am walking backward,” “I have been overtaken,” “I am on a stage,” “I am dancing,” “I am waiting,” “I am on the border,” etc.). The audience wanders around the space and becomes a part of the installation as they attempt to search for the movements on the screens and in the mirrors. Before the videos start to play, there is a video prologue by the artist in a separate location of the exhibition space.
Long ago, the word motoori, now extinct, used to be a synonym for mai,
the Japanese word for the circular movement of “revolving.”
Wandering without purpose or moving sideways in search of a purpose.
Mai was born out of unconscious revolving movements.
In mai, words come before the movement.
It’s even said that mai is the state of inviting the gods.
An exhibition could also be called a mai of sorts.
As people wander around in search of art.
This is my attempt to invite the gods using the sideways movements and utterances of mai.