Kūkai is a new collaboration between digital media artist Robert Campbell and ceramic sculptor Yuki Nakamura. It is installed at Kittredge Gallery at University of Puget Sound from January 22, 2013 to March 2, 2013.
Their first collaborative project was for the 2006 New Works Laboratory, a program between 911 Media Arts Center and the Henry Art Gallery that pairs a visual artist working in traditional media with a digital media artist experimenting with new technologies to co-create and exhibit new and innovative works of art.
They created Floating Plaster/City Motion, a multimedia installation comprising video, audio, and cast sculptures incorporating three synchronized video projections. The work integrated sculptural formal aesthetics with architectonic video projections of animated imagery culminating in the creation of an evocative and dynamic installation.
Kukai is an extension of and elaboration on some of the revisited experimentations and ideas generated during their six-month residency in 2006, and an installation at SOIL in 2012. The artists have noted: “We live directly across Puget Sound from one another- one on Vashon Island, the other in the Old Town district of Tacoma. Sea and sky are omnipresent in our daily imagery: as we watch the floating forms of ships, tankers, and drifting objects, we think of the sea that links the Pacific Northwest with Japan, and the parts and pieces of homes washed away during Japan’s recent tsunami which are now arriving on these shores. The forms that we are reactivating are based on traditional Japanese wood joinery: forms that create bonds that hold parts together. We are basing our approach to combining our respective art forms on the linkage between these general ideas.”
The installation is an immersive environment created using digital projection, porcelain, and Mylar. This project is supported in part by the Tacoma Artists Initiative Program.