GUEST CURATOR - Ibuki Kuramochi                                        

Ibuki Kuramochi

March 28 – Apr. 1, 2022

Ibuki Kuramochi was trained as a Butoh dancer at the Kazuo Ohno Butoh Studio in Tokyo and uses this focus on the body and physicality as a way of examining cultural identity and philosophy. Through the use and imagery of her own body, she creates dance performances, videos, installations, and paintings as a way of enacting vivisection on patriarchal traditions, reimagining past and present cultures, and looking towards the future. She asks, what validity and value do these traditions hold in our contemporary and future worlds? ⁠

"I will critique these patriarchal physicalities with an exploration of the phenomenal body, the womb, and the female body, which emerge anew in conjunction with the concept of cyborg-feminism and technology.“⁠

Ibuki Kuramochi is an interdisciplinary artist born in Japan.⁠

Through her work, she pursues the physicality of Japanese Butoh dance’s poetic choreography and the pursuit of the human body in anatomy. Her practice incorporates performance art, video art, installation and is deeply rooted in the body, metamorphosis, and cyborg feminism. ⁠
There is the eroticism of sexuality, transformation, melting, compatibility, etc., the crossover of spirit and body between membranes, and the materialization of the body through the escape of the spirit from the body.⁠
Her work evokes a break from the oblivion of the body in today's virtual world, and an awakening to a new physicality extracted from the media. She has lived and worked in the USA since 2019 with an artist visa. ⁠ 


I often think about my death and after death.⁠

Having no siblings and never having children, I anticipate that my end will be found in decay.⁠

The point I like about performance art done with the body is that it is not physically permanent. Death of the Artist = Death of the Art (physically).⁠

This article talks about research on the disposal of dead bodies and the environment.⁠

I was most intrigued by "Body Farms" And Human Composting.⁠


“The nutrients in a corpse support life and save an estimated 1 metric ton of carbon compared to standard burial or cremation” By Mallory McDuff ⁠

I Spent A Year Researching The Best Options For Our Bodies After We Die. Here's What I Found.
Published by HuffPost⁠
Written by Mallory McDuff
Mar. 25, 2022⁠

Read the article Here

I also question and frequently think about the maternal instinct and the maternal principle.⁠

I feel and love my dog like children.⁠

Since the 2000s, Donna Haraway has been reconsidering the various ways of bonding, in which we repeatedly respond to the person in front of us while respecting each other, with the term "companion species" at the core of her work.⁠

The female character Reiko Tamura, who is one of the characters in the Japanese manga "Parasite," is a human female, but inside she is a space parasite. The parasite has landed on Earth with an instinct to devour the human species.⁠

She has sex with the same parasitic human male and carries a human child in her belly.⁠

For her, the act of carrying the human species in her body was an experiment and part of her research.⁠

She gives birth and eventually dies, realizing the coexistence of human and parasite.⁠

If my maternal principle exists, it is currently directed at my companion species, my dog.⁠

Experience: I let a baby bird nest in my hair for 84 days
Published by The Guardian⁠
Written by Hannah Bourne-Taylor 
Mar. 25, 2022⁠

Read the article Here

I love seeing these futuristic designs in skin care products.⁠

It's because I feel the cyborg nature of the body that surrounds itself in a skin care mask.⁠

The skin, the membrane that surrounds our body, needs a lot of water.⁠

The skin has also been called the third brain.⁠

My interest in the body-skin has deepened since the pandemic.⁠

My mind has turned inward and I pay more attention to the skin, which is the boundary between the outside and the inside.⁠

In 2019, Japanese cosmetics companies Shiseido and Kao have developed cosmetics that create a "Second skin”.⁠

Second skin technology is an artificial skin on the skin that can instantly hide unevenness, wrinkles, and sagging skin.⁠

I have a facial care device, and after washing my face, I like the act of placing it on my face and applying a small amount of electric current to my face.⁠

Is it because my skin is technologically systematized? Maybe it is because it is a shortcut to becoming a cyborg.⁠

I Regret To Inform You The Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare LED Mask Is Worth Every Penny
Published by HuffPost⁠
Written by Lourdes Avila Uribe
Mar. 25, 2022⁠

Read the article Here

With 3 million Youtube subscribers, Kizuna Ai is a Vtuber (Virtual Youtuber) pioneer and one of Japan's most famous celebrities.⁠

While browsing YouTube the other day, a TV show featuring Kizuna Ai came on and I felt the possibility of glitch feminism from Kizuna's presence.⁠

Japanese variety TV shows are usually hosted by male comedians and are often subjected to gender and sexual harassment against young female talents.⁠

But when Kizuna appeared on the TV show as a guest celebrity, the situation was completely different.⁠

The harassing language and patriarchal intimidating attitude used against human female counterparts did not pass muster with her as a virtual human. She does not have the physicality to be harassed in the first place.⁠

The comedians were completely at the mercy of Kizuna's virtual human perception.⁠

In terms of a physicality that is not trampled by the patriarchal system, the anime idol-like design of Kizuna's figuration is difficult to judge.⁠

However, the presence of Kizuna Ai in the patriarchal space of the real world was clearly an embodiment of what glitch feminism is all about. ⁠

Leading VTuber Kizuna AI Confirms Anime Project Debut
Published by Virtual Humans⁠
Written by Astrid Hiort
Mar. 29, 2022⁠

Read the article Here

This is my last news share today.
This is an article from before I moved to the US, in 2018, when I was featured in Japan Today, a major English-language media outlet in Japan.

What does it mean to be a Cultural Bridge?
I began to think about the otherness of my own existence in the United States.
Japan is a country with a long tradition and culture.
This tradition is rooted in essentialism, and this tradition is imbued with a long history of patriarchy.
Tradition is part of Japan's identity, and I understand its artistry.
However, traditional culture and today’s art have very different contexts.

In 2019, an exhibition at the Aichi Triennale in Japan that curated only political works was cancelled due to right-wing repression.
Threats were sent to the venue, including "bomb the exhibition" and "kill anyone involved in the exhibition."
These social backgrounds are the reason why many Japanese artists (including younger ones) create works attributed to essentialism or attributed to subcultures such as animation.

“The squeaky wheel gets oiled” describes American society, whereas the proverb "A nail that stands will be hammered down." describes Japanese society, which is a striking illustration of how different the social structures of Japan and the United States are.

What does peace and silence mean?
There are many reasons why Japanese society cannot permanently break away from essentialism.
Language, religion, ethics, and environment, including the proverb mentioned earlier, build tradition and shape society.
In a homogenized society, society is opinion and identity. In Japanese society, individual identity is completely opaque.

When I participated in an online feminist talk in Japan, a Japanese feminist advised Japanese high school students, "You are still young. Study English and move abroad."
These words sum it up. 
Once again I am confronting and critiquing my previous thinking attributed to essentialism.

Now in 2022 the context of “Cultural Bridge” is constantly renewing and changing in my mind.

Ibuki Kuramochi: A cultural bridge from Japan to the world
Published by Japan Today
Written by Nancy Green
Sep. 5, 2018

Read the article Here