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Light and Shadow

Light and Darkness, Life and Death, Outer and Inner: Light and Shadow explore the opposing elements that balance our lives and the universe

Light and Shadow is a ground-breaking arts project by Sizzle Ohtaka and Takayuki Fujimoto. It began as a prototype presented at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe in 2003.

Sizzle Ohtaka, an internationally-acclaimed vocal artist, has developed the project over several years with Takayuki Fujimoto, an innovative ex-Dumb Type lighting designer.

Following the hugely successful three-months exhibition at the Ichihara Lakeside Museum in Chiba prefecture in 2016, the project has already attracted invitations from other arts festivals and museums, including the Japan Alps Arts Festival 2017.

Light and Shadow comprises an LED lighting installation and exhibition, including a live performance.

The exhibition explores overlapping dualities, combining physical props, the venue environment, Takayuki Fujimoto’s dramatic lighting designs, and computer programmed Sizzle Ohtaka’s multiple voices. Audiences experience the continuous creation of new moments, reflecting the constant birth, growth, and change of all things in the universe.

In the site-specific live performance, Sizzle Ohtaka further embraces duality, wearing a hand-crafted costume and a mask on the back of her head to become a two-sided figure who roams throughout the venue.

There will also be a Osenaka (back) mask-making workshop and the Osenaka Ondo (“back dance”), which can be enjoyed by people of all ages. This is based on the Japanese belief that ancestral spirits return from heaven to be with family when people celebrate with feasts and the Bon dance, offering a new way for the public to engage with and become part of an ancient tradition.

The project’s concept draws upon these traditions and universal theme, and uses them to explore the opposing elements that balance our lives and the universe: Light and Darkness, Life and Death, and the Outer and Inner. In doing this, it creates something simultaneously ancient and modern, as well as beautifully eternal.

Text and English translation by mu:arts ©

Main Public Performances

  • 2017:  Japan Alps Arts Festival 2017 (Nagano)
  • 2016: “Darkness Art Museum”, Ichihara Lakeside Museum (Chiba)
  • 2013: “Under the Camphor Tree”, Tokushima LED Art Festival (Tokushima)
  • 2013:  Minamata Art Meeting (Kumamoto)


PR trailer, Ichihara Lakeside Museum, April 2016

Osenaka Ondo performance, Kitamoto City Cultural Centre, Dec 2016

“Under the Camphor Tree”, Tokushima LED Art Festival (Tokushima)

External Artist Links

Takayuki Fujimoto

Sizzle Ohtaka