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‍1996-2018 ‍© ‍FormLAB,  Les ‍Joynes ‍Joynes ‍LLC, ‍ARS, ‍New ‍York. ‍All ‍Rights ‍Reserved.

2020 Research on Displacement and Border in Tohoku, Japan

2019 Research on temporal transmigration of memory and site for museum project in Oyayama Prefecture, Japan 

2010 FormLAB Public Performances, Shinjuku

2006 Nagasawa Woodblock Printmaking Fellow, Awajishima, Japan

2005 Art Fair Tokyo, Japan (2005)

2003 Mars Gallery, Tokyo, Japan (2003)

2002 Tactical Museum/ AIT, Tokyo, Japan (2002)

2002 Maejima Art Center, Okinawa, Japan (2002)

2000 Asahi Contemporary Art 2000, Tokyo, Japan (2000)

2000 Mizuma Art Gallery, Japan

2000  Asahi Art 2000 Exhibition 

1999-2001 Masters in Fine Art, Musashino Art University, Tokyo, Japanese Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (Monbukagakushō) Scholar

1998-1999 Research Scholar in Sculpture, Musashino Art University, Japanese Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (Monbukagakushō) Scholar

1998 Solo Exhibition, Norimatsu Museum, Matsuyama, Japan

1985 Sophia University Summer Program in Japanese History and Sociology, Tokyo

Current Research Japan

“Exploring notions of identity in Japan through community-interactive interdisciplinary arts research platforms”

A. Background: Today, the advancement of globalization, communication and cultural exchange has prompted contemporary artists to search for new and significant ways to create art and initiate new forms of intercultural dialogue and community. Using arts research,1 artists are now initiating cross-disciplinary experimental laboratories (Bishop, 2004),2 that are “spaces that can produce new relationships between spectator and artwork” (Enwezor, 2012)3 between the arts and other disciplines (sociology, cultural studies, humanities, psychology, critical theory, anthropology, and education). Utilizing interdisciplinary inquiry, arts research investigates gaps between disciplines encouraging new forms of dialogue through experiment.4 One of the fastest growing areas in higher education, arts research is now being fully-integrated into university programs worldwide.

Collaborating with two university institutions in Japan this will be the first university interdisciplinary project of its kind examining through arts-research Japan’s evolving generational identities, gender identities, notions of border, inclusion/exclusion and its participation in the Global exploring the intersection of art, sociology, media studies, cultural studies, and trans-Asian popular culture. 

B.  Purpose of Proposed Research: We have identified four preliminary targets for field research: a displaced kasetsu community in Tohoku, Japanese communities assuming dual-identity including Nikkei Burajiru-jin in Tokyo, disappearing indigenous communities in Hokkaido, and the emergence of global and fragmented intergenerational identities in Japan. We will develop FormLAB’s methodologies as a community-interactive learning mechanism and contribute our discoveries and insights to both published research as well as exhibitions and on-site interventions. This will also serve as a university education model to be integrated in new university art programming and curricula.

C. Proposal Plan

Procedures: Each iteration includes four phases: 1) pre-research, 2) installation and performance actions or interventions with teams of 5-15 persons, 3) examination of artifacts and creative outcomes, 4) Discussion within host-site. FormLAB engenders local-voice as a site a stage for creation of community driven artworks video, dialogue, interviews, and drawing. Analyze and document research. 

Initiate field interviews. Dialogues with local scholars in Tokyo. Preparation of FormLAB operational model at university. Initiate FormLAB-Ofunato research notions of displaced communities and notions of inclusion/exclusion and border. Plan the installation of a transparent reconstruction of a kasetsu dwelling as a temporary micro-museum in Ofunato, inviting participation from residents who are still displaced, 

Completion of transportable working model of FormLAB. Transportation to Tohoku. Identification of exhibition venue for first project, Submission of outline for post-doctoral report; University student workshop on process art, 4) Half-day symposium on geographically-dispersed art practices at university. Panel Chair on Art Laboratories, College Arts Association Conference. Conducting documentary interviews, meeting with residents that have been displaced. Identification of site in Tokyo for second field project: Nikkei Burajiru-jin.



(1) Arts Research is the fastest growing area in university arts education. Arts research does not merely de-code art. It is a mode of parallel creative activity that engages art making more profoundly and through the lens of other disciplines. Without experiment art risks becoming homogenized and merely fetish, decoration and consumable (Joynes, 2017). Asking open-ended questions, engaging interdisciplinary approaches, collaboration and working with unknown variables art creates a zone of continuous creative challenge. It focuses on research processes and methodologies, rather than only outputs that define a series of research questions. It specifies methodologies for addressing and answering the research questions, issues or problems. Art research also addresses other relevant research and how will make to the advancement of creativity, insights, and knowledge. [Arts and Humanities Research Council, UK.]

(2) Antagonism and Relational Aesthetics: October (Fall 2004): pp. 51-79. 

(3) Intense Proximity: an Anthology of the Near and the Far, Paris: Artlys, Centre National des Arts Plastiques, p 11. 

(4) Inspired by interdisciplinary experimentation through :Happenings” including Allan Kaprow’s 18 Happenings in Six parts October, 1959. 

(5) FormLAB has examined displaced communities in Germany (2008), Singapore (2009); under-represented communities in Brazil (2012); and nomadic communities in Mongolia (2014).