BAKERU: Transforming Spirits is a participatory exhibition inviting visitors to step into the supernatural world of Japanese folk traditions through a process of transformation (bakeru means ‘transform’ in Japanese). It is also a space of connection in various ways—the connection between the long-lasting folk traditions and the fast advancing digital technology, between the northern region in Japan and the world, and between the everyday space and the space of festivities.
Showcasing interactive digital technology, Japanese creative art and design studio WOW created four large projections to activate contemporary technology to enhance the understanding of traditional cultures in Japan. Regional cultures epitomized in seasonal folk festivals, in particular those from the northern region of “Tohoku,” place strong emphasis on the transformative power of nature upon which people’s lives depend.
BAKERU is designed to simulate this space of the extraordinary in juxtaposition with the ordinary. The interactive technology becomes a vehicle to transport participants into the space of the extraordinary, spurring their transformation into supernatural beings. Just as in this exhibition space, the world of the supernatural and that of everyday life exist in tandem, and BAKERU stands to remind us that we, as humans, are always in close proximity to both sides. Read more
Exhibition-related programs and workshops which complement the world debut of BAKERU can be found on the Events page.
WOW is a creative studio innovating experiences in art and design. Based in Tokyo, Sendai, London and San Francisco, WOW is involved in a wide field of design work, including advertising and commercial works, installations for exhibition spaces, and user interface designs for prominent brands. The studio’s practice is based on a vision to bring positive change to society, and its original artwork and products have been exhibited both in Japan and internationally. WOW is passionate about exploring the tremendous possibilities of visual design; searching for solutions that are useful for society while revealing something true and profound. https://www.w0w.co.jp/en/
Presented and organized by: JAPAN HOUSE Los Angeles
Sponsored by: ANA (All Nippon Airways) / Panasonic
In cooperation with: Gyouzanryu Maikawa Shishiodori / Tokyo Shishiodori / Oga City / Baba no Taue Odori Preservation Society / FabLab Sendai FLAT / Fukunaga Print Co., Ltd. / cap LLC. / Ito Yutaka
Curatorial support provided by: tateito-yokoito LLC. / Tohoku Standard
Art direction by: WOW
Special thanks to: Hollywood & Highland