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Dodes'kaden

In the Sumida area, a long and quiet park is crossed by the four tracks of the metro: under the rails, the pillars form like the negative or the cast of a house. The place is continuously shaken by the passage of the trains and by the intense sound of it. While this symbolic shelter may remind the use of parks in Japan as places to find refuge in case of fire or collapse of buildinds, the train and its vibrations is a recurring comparison in narratives about earthquakes. We have mentally projected the narrow houses we found in the neighborhood which seem to resist both from earthquakes and from modernization and growth of high buildings. As frail as they are, they hold out against the surrounding buildings with the same verticality because of their detachment from any block of houses.

While virtually nothing seems to happen on the still frame at first, the viewer must focus on the soundtrack reflecting the activity going on all around on a sunday afternoon in a park (bikes, birds, and children plays…) to ‘see’ something. No evidence of the rails on the screen until we suddenly ear the sound of a train approaching followed by a succession of pictures of the cracked houses hammered at its pace.

It took the form of a video and an onsite exhibition of a selection of postcard-sized photographs of the houses to be seen in this harsh environment under the rails.

< video | exposition >

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