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Madoka Chiba

Photo by Shu Nakamura / Provided by YUI-PORT 撮影:中村脩/提供:新潟市芸術創造村・国際青少年センター(ゆいぽーと)

If the Sun Vanished

Video 15:10
Made by Artist in Residence at Yui-Port in Niigata with citizens
Individual Version

If the Sun Vanished is a video piece with subtitles added to audio, and was created in collaboration with seven citizens of Niigata City at the time I was staying with the artist-in-residence facility YUI-PORT.

Even if the sun disappeared at this very moment, the light emitted from it just before its disappearance would travel through space toward Earth. From the distance between the two and the speed of light, it has been calculated that sunlight reaches the earth in 8 minutes and 19 seconds. Under the premise that participants had learned of the sun’s disappearance from the press immediately after it had happened, they answered the artist’s question: “What would you do in that 8 minutes and 19 seconds?” They would also experience the length of 8 minutes and 19 seconds before recording.

This piece is set in the context of survival, and encourages participants and viewers to anticipate and prepare for various events by deliberately throwing unexpected events their way (“unexpected events” hinting at the novel coronavirus, which has changed society enough to create a “new normal”). The subtitles also pick up every seemingly meaningless interjection, and because they stay faithful to the speed at which the participants speak, you can guess at their personalities even when you don’t hear their voices. What is interesting is that many of the participants talk about what they care about in response to this question, conveying that mental support is also essential for survival.
This work was created on site during artist-in-residence in Niigata City in July 2020.

Many thanks and respects to the participants.


ビデオ 15:10