Structural Automation, Loop

from You Saw Nothing: Sight, Digital Video, Post-3.11 Japan

As the fragmentation and the stillness are manifested within the structure of digital video, the forward movement, we continue to produce the aesthetics within the process. You Saw Nothing in Fukushima is governed by the structural automation of loop and shift, which I consider as the state of continuity. In this short section we focus on the loop and reconsider the fragmentation from the perspective of the periphery.


Automation, on an aesthetic level, is equivalent to the recursiveness in Rosalind Krauss’s theory of “the post-medium condition”.* Krauss defines the recursiveness as the structure that rules the structures themselves.** Aligned with Krauss’s recursiveness in this structuralist sense, automation in You Saw Nothing in Fukushima is further sociologically coalesced with the automated condition of the perpetuated political and economic structure of centre–periphery that we looked at in part 2 with reference to Kainuma. As You Saw Nothing in Fukushima is a variable-dimension, looped digital video work, the structural automation of the loop, thus, embodies the perpetuated position of the periphery, which is, in Kainuma’s words, automatic and voluntary obedience. Hence, slow-down is the fragmentation of speed, and this coalescence embodied by the slide show is looped. It is a perpetuated state of the permanent political and socioeconomic shadows under the advanced mode of centralisation. The loop within You Saw Nothing in Fukushima, entwined with Krauss’s and Kainuma’s theories, structurally perpetuates the peripherality. The fragmentation of the forward movement, hence, from the perspective of the periphery, signifies the impoverished state under the exploitative drive of centralisation.

So far, through You Saw Nothing in Fukushima we have examined the fragmentation of the forward movement as two discrete signifiers. The first signifier was, as slow-down, the identification of the nation of the post-growth era with speed. This identification with speed had a diverted identification as a dead end, as of the post-3.11 era. Both the identifications of the nation, signified by slow-down and dead end, reflect the fragmentation of the forward movement as the state of a weakened drive for growth. The second signifier was, as stillness, portrayed as the impoverished state of the periphery under the exploitative drive of centralisation.

*Rosalind E. Krauss, Under Blue Cup, Cambridge, MA and London: MIT Press, 2011.
**Ibid., p. 4. For further reading, see Rosalind E. Krauss, A Voyage on the North Sea: Art in the Age of the Post- Medium Condition, London: Thames & Hudson, 2000.
error: Content is protected !!