Tokyo's Urban Scenes Filled by the Imagination of Artist, Erin McCluskey

March 28, 2018 / Open Call

Tokyo's Urban Scenes Filled by the Imagination of Artist, Erin McCluskey
Residency length: 1 month (August - September, 2017)
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Erin McCluskey arrived in Tokyo from Toronto, Canada ready to grab a bike and trek the city's extensive urban scene. Carrying her backpack equipped with a chair and tools, and the notebook that never left her side, she aimed to see, explore, and sketch the city at each moment. Erin took action right away to gather her artistic material from inspiration found in the city itself.

In Erin's past works spun from Toronto's urban life, one finds the city transformed into a quirky and colorful place by her unique vision. It is as though we move in time with Erin's own experiences felt between every encounter with her subjects. With even fairy tale or folkloric characters and motifs, viewers can perceive daily city life in new and romantic ways.

The AIR 3331 Open Call program offered Erin the challenge of taking up Tokyo as her first overseas city as subject matter. In addition, as her first time in Japan and her first residency, Erin experienced everything with fresh eyes. At the heart of Tokyo's urban core, AIR 3331 provided the perfect base for envisioning the city through her own imagination. From sketching outdoors in the middle of bustling Ueno Park and Shinjuku, to joining a local Chiyoda city festival, all sights were drawn up in Erin's style to become fantastic places.
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With sketchbooks and a wide array of painted artworks in the making, at the end of her residency, Erin decided to hold an open studio event in the Nishiki-cho Shared Studio , where she worked daily after traveling the streets of Tokyo. Erin's work area was overflowing with the internalized map of her Tokyo experiences - from train lines, museum tickets, sketches on the go, to journal entries and famous romantic poems. During her residence, she even had the chance to make a collaboration painting with fellow resident, Kyungwon Yoon , from South Korea.
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Erin's desk corner in the Nishiki-cho Studio attested to the wide network of places and objects that became her personal map of Tokyo. She transformed the city into an alternative Tokyo as a fairytale of urban life through her imagination. The AIR 3331 team looks forward to what kind of metropolis Erin will envision in her next travels from city to city.
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We hope the creativity of our past participants will inspire some ideas for your project proposal to AIR 3331!

Residencies between: May 1, 2018 - March 29 2019 (1-3 months per residency)
Deadline: March 30, 2018

AIR 3331: Emily

Kyungwon Yoon Weaves a Korean Legend Into the Present

March 15, 2018 / Open Residence / AIR3331

You Might Just Meet A Ghost:
Kyungwon Yoon Weaves a Korean Legend Into the Present
Residency length: 3 months

Kyungwon Yoon flew into Tokyo from South Korea carrying with her a draft of her original graphic novel. Her plan was to complete the full book in Korean, English, and Japanese with the goal of someday selling it in bookstores internationally. With her smart tablet, paints, brushes, and worksuit she went straight to the job in her own way, by drawing both digitally and by hand.

The AIR 3331 team finally got to look inside her graphic novel when Kyungwon asked us to edit and translate her story in Korean into complete English and Japanese. When opening the book, one finds expressive and raw, twisting lines of hybrid fish creatures, light and shadow marked by heavy contrast, and abstract layouts that move in a non-linear flow. As so, the story meanders in and out of the past and present, as well as the human, animal, and ghost forms. When we first asked Kyungwon what the story was about, she told us it was a Korean legend about a king who became a dragon. But with a closer look, it appeared that Kyungwon was telling the story through her own imagination.

With the Nishikicho residence accessible to all of Tokyo's conveniences, Kyungwon made thorough use of the local ACCEA printing shop to produce her book in all three languages. She had changed the title from "The King's Last Will" to simply, "Meat." As shocking as it sounds, the title fits the quite corporeal moments of her story. Now that she had her material, Kyungwon wanted to share her graphic novel with the Japanese audience. This led Kyungwon to join fellow resident at the time, Ignacio Chico , in holding a tent for the Trans Arts Tokyo festival. Here she laid out her graphic novels, with even a stampcard station for the public to make their own fish stories with hand-made stamps. This made her graphic novel a hit with visitors from all over the world who stopped to think, "Meat?"
After catching the attention of festival-goers, Kyungwon went ahead in planning her very first solo-exhibition. Kyungwon drew up the structure and with the support of the 3331 installation team, set up the entire space. Using the 1F Room 101 inside 3331, the exhibition attracted a good flow of foot trafic and 3331 staff, including the installation team members that became a major part of her project. It featured a reading section, an impressive number of two-dimensional and three-dimensional works - even a combined painting/mural/sculpture popping out from the wall! Visitors could travel through all dimensions of Kyungwon's imagination, where ghosts, ancestors, animals, and the living were brought together in real space.
Through her residency, Kyungwon was able to spread her graphic novel across the communities of 3331 and Tokyo, even across the world. The staff at 3331 recently received an original New Year greeting card from Kyungwon, a piece of the quirky cuteness of her fish characters that traveled beyond naitonality and language. As Kyungwon looks to the future in publishing "Meat" and drawing up even more stories, AIR 3331 sends our support and hopes to come across her graphic novels on Tokyo's bookshelves soon.

*Follow Kyungwon Yoon's Work:
We hope the creativity of our past participants will inspire some ideas for your project proposal to AIR 3331!
Period: January 2018 - March 2019 (1-3 months per residency)

Introducing Ignacio Chico: Carrying Memory from Buenos Aires to Tokyo Residency length: 3 months

January 27, 2018 / Open Residence / AIR3331

From the moment he arrived in Tokyo from Buenos Aires, Ignacio Chico was eager to share his family history intertwined with the Malvinas War (1982). Going as far as carrying with him his father's entire war uniform in a suitcase, he brought to 3331 Arts Chiyoda a historical narrative not commonly heard in Japan.
Within the first two weeks of his stay, Ignacio ambitiously curated a retrospective of his work inside 3331's 104 gallery. This included 2 small video installations, a floor section covered in laurel leaves appearing to spark into flames, and a large screen projecting a film piece set in the vast Pampas plains of Argentina. Ignacio's desire to connect his family background to the Japanese audience was strongly felt, and his interaction with the community only grew deeper.
During the third month of his residency, Ignacio put together an even bigger second exhibition inside 3331. Witnessing the many visitors from diverse fields in the arts, residency directors, local artists, and the 3331 staff he befriended, it was Ignacio's charisma and sincere desire to communicate with others that brought them there. With a full installation of an actual war refuge covered in sticks and mud, surrounded by his father's war photos, Ignacio recreated his memories in that very space, forming a new point of cultural intersection within 3331's network.

What's more, just a few days before his departure, Ignacio joined the major Trans Arts Tokyo festival (affiliated with 3331) in an exhibition tent featuring AIR 3331 artists. He hung his father's full uniform in the tent, drawing curiosity and questions from passersby.

Ignacio's connection to Tokyo has not ended there. Through an interview held during his stay by local Argentinian art magazine, ramona (*for article in Spanish, see below link), Ignacio shared details of his residency work with AIR 3331. Currently he is planning on calling over Japanese artists he connected with during his stay to hold a group-show in Buenos Aires. No doubt, Ignacio will keep pushing cultural boundaries with his personal history, to be expanded into stronger connections made between Argentinia and Japan through art. AIR 3331 looks forward to supporting Ignacio's future endeavors!

*ramona interview article:

We hope the creativity of our past participants will inspire some ideas for your project proposal to AIR 3331!
Period: January 2018 - March 2019 (1-3 months per residency)
Deadline: March 30, 2018

AIR 3331: Emily

[AIR 3331 Open Call] Applications Now Open for May 2018 - March 2019!!

January 22, 2018 / Open Residence / AIR3331

[AIR 3331 Open Call] Applications Now Open for May 2018 - March 2019!!
An Open Residency for Creators Seeking Both Super-Urban Tokyo and Its Local Charms

Envision your project becoming part of Tokyo's buzzing excitement, while discovering the uniqueness at its corners. AIR 3331 offers exactly this mix of urban and local Tokyo. Applications are now open for all fields of researchers and creators to join our open residence for the period of May 2018 - March 2019! What will your project be in Tokyo?
At both a large and local scale, AIR 3331 offers opportunity to all fields of artists, curators and researchers to engage with Japan's most major art scene, while uncovering one-of-a-kind cultural treasures. With either a private studio situated within 3331 Arts Chiyoda, a junior high school repurposed as an art center (at the center of Akihabara/Kanda), or the shared studio plan in the nearby historical book district, participants can become active and freely develop their work across Tokyo's communities.
In order to boost your project, AIR 3331 seeks to build bridges between creators and the community, offering support by experienced international coordinators. We help with a range of services including event coordination, translation, networking, and sharing information.* We are enthusiastic supporters, watching your residency experience grow into new knowledge and value for both you and our community. AIR 3331 eagerly awaits you in Tokyo!

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Residency Period: May 1, 2018 to March 29, 2019

Residency Length: 1-3 months**
Facility Details: here
Fee Details: here
Support Details: here

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DEADLINE: March 30, 2018
Notification of acceptance: Early April, 2018 (Notification date may change based on applicant numbers)
Please submit the materials below to [residence(at)] by the deadline.
Materials (up to 2MB)
(1) Application form (download here)
(2) Recent CV
(3) Portfolio (at least 5 images, video, audio, essay or web links as relevant)
(4) Supporting materials to describe your residency project, as applicable (example: sample schedules, images/videos, web links, etc.)
Note: Applicants must be able to cover the costs of the program fee, travel, production costs and living expenses.

AIR 3331 Open Call (Contact: Emily, Chihiro)
3331 Arts Chiyoda
6-11-14 Sotokanda Chiyoda-ku Tokyo Japan 101-0021
TEL | +81 3 6803 2441
MAIL | residence(at)3331(dot)jp
*There are services included in the base program fee and optional support/space options at an additional fee.
**Calculated in 4-week increments.

3 creators, 3 projects: What you can do with a month (or three) in residency with AIR 3331 (Tokyo, Japan)

July 6, 2017 / Staff Blog

One draw of a self-initiated residency is the chance to work from scratch: from conceptualizing your project to doing hands-on exploration, and the final satisfaction of sharing your work -all with the added adventure of being in central Tokyo.

Here, the AIR 3331 residence program (run by the independent arts and community hub 3331 Arts Chiyoda) is a base for artists, curators and researchers from varied countries and practices. While playing host to such a wide array of people can be a challenge, it also makes space for unexpected encounters - the life source of creativity!

To go along with our current open call, let's take a look at how three creators achieved their projects:

Sunwoo Kim (Korea)
Residency length: 1 month

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Fresh to Tokyo, Sunwoo began wandering the streets for imagery. Returning to Nishikicho Studio at the end of the day, the influence of the area on his new work was immediate. Working towards presenting his work at the shared open studio, Sunwoo met other artists working in Tokyo and even joined local cultural events like Kanda Festival. Sunwoo capped his residency with an artist talk, connecting 3331 Arts Chiyoda with his work with Eulji Design Art Project in Seoul. But it didn't end in Japan! Talks with 3331 Arts Chiyoda director and artist, Masato Nakamura lead to further discussion in Seoul... might this be the start of an international collaboration?!

Evelyne Leblanc-Roberge (Canada)
Residency length: 2 months

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Evelyne dedicated her extra time in residency to not one, but three artwork series, which continue to develop today! Enlisting the support of AIR 3331 to spread the word, Evelyne independently sought out participants for her video series "Les Attentes", which was filmed in Nishikicho Studio, among other countries. Between shoots, her out-of-studio exploration spread from the most humble corners of 3331 Arts Chiyoda's renovated school building, to the seemingly infinite train system, researching spaces and filling her notebook with maps and memos. In culmination, her open studio featured a window-facing video projection from the residence bedroom. To facilitate the interaction, AIR 3331 staff went door-to-door to neighboring businesses and residences to inform of the public presentation -the reaction to a room seemingly filling with water was unforgettable!

Fiona McGurk (Scotland)
Residency length: 3 months

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If your schedule allows, three months might be the best way to digs as deep as possible into the Tokyo art scene. There are numerous community events, exhibition receptions, an art fair and art festival held through 3331 Arts Chiyoda that change with the seasons.

After experimenting with her materials in Nishikicho Studio, Fiona rented extra space for a workshop inside 3331 Arts Chiyoda, where a diverse range of passers-by gather, each contributing bits of thoughts and words to her installation. As part of the Trans Arts Tokyo festival surrounding the residency in the Fall, Fiona opened her studio to the public, interacting with visitors. Finally, her in-studio exhibition caught the attention of community paper Gooddays, who chronicled her response to the local area.

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We hope the creativity of our past participants will inspire some ideas for your project proposal to AIR 3331!

Period: January 2018 - March 2019 (1-3 months per residency)
*Limited openings between September 2017-November 2017 also available. Please inquire.
Deadline: August 20, 2017
Details: here

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