Interview with Objet a Director Wataru Iwata
What is the universe’s origin, and what is the role of a human within it? This question is the foundation of many of the world’s creation myths. These stories provide a sense of connection and purpose for humanity and suggest how they fit into the universe. But how do contemporary preoccupations with technological innovation and scientific progress affect our sense of self and reason? With omnipresent technology providing an on-demand distraction, how can we reconnect and reflect on these more critical questions of existence and progress? These ideas occupy a region of inquiry explored by the Japanese art and music collective Objet a.
Objet a takes its name from the psychoanalytic theory of Jacques Lacan. The name references Lacan’s idea on the origin of desire and its unobtainable goals. The collective and its creative director Wataru Iwata are based in Hokuto City, Japan. With fellow member Mana Fukui and various other collaborators, Objet a blends music, animation, and performance into events and installations that echo these more essential questions. Elements of philosophy and mythology reflect throughout the works forming a lattice from which the images and sounds emanate.
Images and animation from the group find inspiration in the aesthetics of 3D animation and data visualizations. Wireframes, grids, and particles fill the screen with a black and white palette echoing the multi-media works of Ryoji Ikeda or the early animations Rebecca Allen created for the German electronic band Kraftwork. Like Ikeda and Allen, Object a‘s work is a multi-media experience. Musical composition and performance are integral to the artworks weaving together sound and images. Piano, field recordings, and electronic samples establish a path between the natural and digital worlds.
Object a‘s animation Sphere is highlighted in the 2022 edition of the Supernova Animation Festival. Denver Digerati’s Barry Whittaker, spoke with Wataru Iwata about the project and ideas in the work of Objet a.
Read Denver Digerati’s Interview with Sphere / Objet a Director Wataru Iwata