How should artists best handle digital technology? We looked into an artist support program hosted by a private studio called FabLab Setagaya at IID, and art gallery Hakkendo Gallery.
Instructor Koji Nunoyama (right) is teaching artist Isana Yamada (left) how to do modeling work using the pen-shaped 3D haptic device.
Gallery and Studio Jointly Offering Support to Artists
IID Setagaya Manufacturing School contains about 50 creative offices and shops. On its first floor are FabLab Setagaya at IID, which has the latest digital machine tools available for anybody to rent, and Hakkendo Gallery that provides a space for young artists to showcase their work.
Under the artist support program, whose goal is to help artists expand their range of expressions by using digital machine tools, five artists affiliated with Hakkendo Gallery are challenging themselves on creating digital-based artwork.
Seiji Yokoi of Hakkendo Gallery says, “We want to offer support to young artists who graduated from art schools in their artmaking endeavors.”
Koji Nunoyama, a researcher of 3D media, gives guidance to the artists as their instructor. “We started by having them gain basic knowledge about digital media, then explore which method of expression would be best suited for each individual.”
To Thrive as an Artist
Isana Yamada is one of the students in the program. He creates art while working as an educational research assistant at the Tokyo University of the Arts.
“Right now, I can use the facilities at the school, but once my term is over, I will no longer be able to do that. Three-dimensional pieces are expensive to make yet are difficult to sell at a high price. In consideration of my future goals, I wanted to find a way to work more efficiently in a good way and expand the scope of my work, and so I decided to apply to this program.”
The program is still in its testing stage, but it headed toward becoming a huge success, driven by attentive one-on-one instructions and artists’ strong motivation. FabLab Setagaya also accepts requests for classes on any of its facilities, so don’t hesitate to give them a call.
IID Setagaya Manufacturing School was established in 2004. Its classrooms are used as offices as well as event spaces for workshops, exhibitions, and seminars.
Hakkendo Gallery, which opened its doors in 2010, sells and exhibits works by mainly young artists, and offers services such as artwork photography and designing of exhibition pamphlets and pictorial record books.
Kikou 8-01 by Isana Yamada, 2016 (18.5cm width, molded resin)
Contained within the whale-shaped Kikou (meaning “return to port”) series is a story about a sunken ship that returns to port as a whale.
From left to right: Nunoyama, Yamada, and Seiji Yokoi of Hakkendo Gallery.