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Tori Kudo – Archive

A feature length film, directed by Tori Kudo (Mahar Shalal Hash Baz)

This film is made by digital images from the early 00s to 2019, when I started taking pictures with cellular phones. You can see that upgrades in resolution have drastically changed "l'imaginaire" , as we move to smartphones.

Most of the images are taken by myself, but my portraits are taken by others. I can't name all of them exactly. But if I had to name who, among them, are working as photographers in their honor, it would be Seiichi Sugita and Maki Abe.
- Tori Kudo

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The cover of this release was selected from one of six images sent to us by Tori of a sculpture incorporating layered photographs made by his mother. Tori wrote to us saying:

"These six photographs are almost like my mother’s posthumous work. The photographs show a Mobius ring of sheet iron onto which she sticked old photographs on top of each other.

My mother’s father, my grandfather, was a painter who lived in Paris before the war. His style of painting was that he would layer paint very thickly. Georges Rouault scraped off layers of paint so he could create flat paintings. My grandfather’s paintings have 1cm thickness but they seemed more like 3D works rather than the perspective paintings.

My mother piles up photographs on top of each other. So in a way her style resembles my grandfather’s technique from that point of view.

It is quite interesting that I was doing something similar to my mother with the film I made for TakuRoku during lockdown. However in my case I displayed my photos side by side not on top of each other. All is shown, no layering, nothing hidden underneath. It may mean that I still have an attachment to this life.

Archiving seems to be a theme of this time. The thing is what do we archive from history.

“You could see the movement of power in the erased history “- I think Jacques Derrida was talking about something like that…

Freud on the other hand, hated the idea of archiving…he said “it’s the end of one’s life once one started making their own autobiographical anthology.. that kind of wrapping up one’s life while you are still alive.” Yet recently I had an idea of looking into archiving from the perspective of a dead person looking back at their life. And this could fit into this time of pandemic as everyone is facing more or less this issue so I made this film.

The first half of this year since the lock down I had done nothing as I received a state grant but the offer from TakuRoku label encouraged me to finish this work. It has been a good practice for me."

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Tori Kudo - film & direction

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Kota Takeuchi - Font for the title at the end
http://kota-takeuchi.net/

Tori Kudo - The song "archive" that plays in the end roll. Recorded in March 2020.

Oliver Barrett - artwork design

Film running time: 1 hour 44 minutes

File type: .mp4

Tori Kudo

Detailed and hilarious interiew with Tori availiable here on Noise.com. Questions by Shinji Shibayama and Ikuro Takahashi & G-Modern. Translated by Alan Cummings.