If you visited a resident of the Shimo-Kajiro Housing Complex come spring, what would you ask him/her? How would you communicate yourself to them?
“Dialog” might feel like something that happens every day, but we believe it is also replete with discord and misunderstanding (despite some more felicitous examples). How do we establish a forum for understanding others, communicating ourselves, talking together on a variety of matters and sharing experiences?
We will explore the possibilities for dialog designed so that people who’ve just met each other appreciate the moment as they talk, and carry their experiences out into a new world.
Wataru Asada runs the “Radio Shimo-Kajiro” project in Shimo-Kajiro Housing Complex, a prefectural disaster-recovery public housing complex in Fukushima’s Iwaki City. We invite Asada to set up a forum for dialog on the basis of a visit to Shimo-Kajiro Housing Complex in the spring.
Shimo-Kajiro Housing Complex is a residential complex where people were evacuated because of the nuclear accident that followed the Great East Japan Earthquake disaster. People moved here from the towns of Tomioka, Okuma, Futaba and Namie close to the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant, where the accident happened. When you visit people who have to live with this huge, unexpected outrage, what can you say? How can you listen to them? Conversely, what possible meaning is there in making casual conversation and freely carving out relationships with individuals regardless of the context or basis of their lives? How about facing up to yourself and then visiting Shimo-Kajiro in that mindset?
Radio Shimo-Kajiro is a music and dialog-based community project rolling out in the prefectural Shimo-Kajiro Housing Complex in Iwaki City. Project organizers create radio shows with recordings of memories of the towns where people once lived, together with well-known music. The recordings are distributed and released as a CD to residents only. With a focus on this practice, project organizers are trying to provide a link between residents with differing positions, and a link to people’s hometowns. The project is ongoing, with the purpose of exchanging encounters with each person’s “self”, bypassing the keyword “reconstruction.”
Developing this sort of forum for dialog together with the public will lead to the extension of creative possibility, something that tends to atrophy and shrink in Japanese society. If the existence of this dialog leads to a more diverse and abundant expansion of creativity, and in particular not to artistic expression aimed at self-verification or the desire for approval or recognition, we might also simultaneously extend various possibilities for surviving in the society of the future.
Planning: Miho Miyashita (NPO Artfull Action)
Wataru Asada (cultural activist and Director of Radio Shimo-Kajiro)
*Advance reservation not required.
*The program contents may be subject to change.
Artfull Action NPO
CAFE an (Daini-Sato Building 1F 3-8-1 Honcho, Koganei City, Tokyo)