Boundaries in Movement and Thought, and Beyond

Text by Shintaro Tokairin & Naoko Horiuchi(AIT)4pages
Handwriting by Shintaro & Olga Mink (Eindhoven, Netherlands)

Text by Shintaro Tokairin

AIT, Project Manager

Text by Naoko Horiuchi

AIT, Curator / dear Me, Director

Handwriting by Olga Mink from Eindhoven, Netherlands 🇳🇱

  • How did you feel about reading the text you're assigned? Is there anything you (un)learned after re-writing it?

    The act of hand writing and not typing someone else’s words was very interesting. It made me feel more close to the writer, as if I were to embody her words.

  • Is there any change in your work and/or life during this continuing pandemic?

    I often talk about “before and after” the pandemic. As a major split between two timezones. It made us aware of our fragile (humble?) position in today’s globalised economy. I think that the lockdowns - as collective isolation - also made us less afraid to embrace uncertainty. I see many are more prone to change their lives, switching jobs, taking a break from the ratrace. Literally embracing the unknown. Something major occurred, which we could have never imagined before. I think it made us realise if I want to change, why wait? I honestly think I am not only speaking for myself here.

  • Have you had any new discoveries or encounters as a result of the pandemic? If yes, what are they?

    That we became increasingly detached from ourselves and our surroundings. The pandemic showed that we - humans and non humans - are all intrinsically connected. If we do not take better care of this interconnection, we might end up living in very unfortunate circumstances. So we better act up and profoundly change some major systemic issues. One of them is that we should put nature on the foreground, instead of economic growth. It is nature that speaks to us all the time, but we have forgotten how to understand it.

  • Have you ever felt you were imposed to follow any rule (and you don't want to follow) in your society? If yes, what and when was it?

    Of course and I believe many others with me. We are all deeply cultivated, whether by religion or other ingrained cultural belief systems. We cannot see our blind spots, which makes it even more challenging to rid ourselves from our bias. Perhaps if we zoom out on a larger timescale, we can recognise which paradigms are dominating our culture(s) and why we tend to follow certain rules without even thinking.

  • During the residency with Seira and Teresa, we also spent some time thinking about how "patriarchy" in Japan and The Netherlands is considered. How is “patriarchy" considered or discussed in where you live (or your country)?

    I see a new generation pushing things forward, creating a profound radical shift towards a more (gender) diverse and inclusive society. It is a good start but still a long way to go. Especially when you consider the changing repressive political climate developing on a global scale. Societies are becoming more closed, which is a huge danger. It may lead towards a development in which we are going backwards in time. To counter act this trend, we need to open up our thinking and create dialogue (not cancel culture). The work of Homi Bhabha and The Third Space Theory is very inspiring. He brings forth notions of hybridity, liminality and a new area of negotiation of meaning and representation to go beyond our ingrained “binary” thinking.

  • Similarly, how is "feminism" considered or discussed in where you live (or your country)?

    We’re still in a predominantly white male dominated culture. Even though here in the Netherlands there are policies to enforce change top down. ( e.g. companies hiring more women in top positions, etc). Nonetheless, to profoundly change the issue of feminism we need a deeper transition. Often I see women in charge but they have a similar mindset, thus nothing really changes on a policy level. So this is not just be a matter of gender, but something more profound.

  • What does "home" mean to you? Can you consider someone who is not blood-related but still as your "family”?

    A place of belonging and where you can just be yourself. This can be anywhere but may not be everywhere.

  • What are your (unpaid) care responsibilities at home or at work in your society as a whole? What is your first impression when you hear the word "care" (to give a hand to someone, to have sympathy)?

    I take care of my son. My cat. My garden. Sometimes friends in need….To take care is to be mindful of something beyond yourself, to go beyond yourself.