Artist Talk - Teppei Kaneuji

We asked Mr. Kane, an artist who creates a world where stories spread like an editor, about cartoonists and Genpei Akasegawa, collages and editing, academics and creativity, culture and art, the Beatles and Boredoms, and more.

Shun Sato (Director of loosejoints / hereinafter referred to as "LJ"): I have always loved Mr. Kane's works and have been chasing him whenever he comes out, so I was introduced to him by a mutual acquaintance, and decided to participate in 22AW. First of all, I am genuinely happy. thank you.
Come to think of it, this is the first time the two of us have talked like this. Could you tell us what made you want to become an artist in the first place?

Teppei Kaneuji : (hereafter referred to as TK): I don't have a clear definition for this, but I've loved making things since I was a child. I also like drawing, and when I was in elementary school, I wanted to be a manga artist.
But I couldn't come up with a story at all, so I thought it was impossible, so I immediately gave up (laughs). As for the painting, I like it, but it's not that I'm crazy good at it.
So when I became a junior high school student, I started thinking that I wanted to become a film director. I also love movies, and have been watching works of various genres for a long time. I thought I couldn't do it myself, so I gave up.
Again, I didn't consult anyone, and I made the decision on my own at the time.

Genpei Akasegawa, collage, magazine

LJ : It's pretty quick to switch, and it's positive (laughs).

TK : That's true. Moreover, when I became a high school student, I wanted to become a musician (laughs). I couldn't even play an instrument, but I couldn't do anything like practice every day, so I gave up on it right away.
I think that "suddenly I can do something" is right for me. For example, to put it in extreme terms, a picture is a picture, even if it's just a single line, it's a picture. I was very impressed at the meeting, and I thought that I could do this too.
It's actually a tremendous technology, I realize later.

LJ : Mr. Akasegawa's work is the pinnacle of solid technology, isn't it?

TK : Yeah, but I didn't realize it at the time and thought anyone could do it (laughs). Things like flipping over cans to turn them into works of art, or simply arranging things that you collect on a daily basis to turn them into works of art, or just showing a point of view like Thomason, things like that just fit perfectly.
I thought that if it was something like so-called contemporary art, I might have a place to belong, so somehow I went to the sculpture department of an art university in my hometown Kyoto.

LJ : Listening to Mr. Kane, I've heard that although the methods are different, you've always aimed to create a story or a single world.

TK : Well, when I started thinking about making things properly at university, I couldn't assemble something from scratch. I became very conscious of the collage-like method, and I was finally able to create something that I could call a work of art.

LJ : Collage is similar to editing, isn't it? Every time I look at Mr. Kane's work, which has a vague sense of a story, I think that the way he arranges his works, the way he changes his perspective, and the way he edits a magazine is especially similar.

TK : I see. I was very sympathetic to the editing method, but I might feel that way more often when I'm actually looking at magazines.
But the big difference is that you don't have to complete it. Even if you don't complete it, even if it doesn't become a package, if it's an art work it will be established. In that sense, both manga and movies have a beginning and an end, and even editors have to put them together in the form of a book or something. If you don't even do that, it may be that you can only call it art.

LJ : Is that the sort of thing where you first decide what the theme of your work is, and then look for the parts that make up that theme? Or do you feel that the theme is decided from the parts?

TK : Yes, both. There are times when I collect things that are somehow interesting on a daily basis without any meaning, and I can see things like belonging or themes in myself, and I intentionally change my way of looking at things accordingly. Sometimes I change and connect them.
For me, it might be fair to say that seeing and encountering something is all about creating a work. The most common thing is that when I'm riding in a car or train and looking at the scenery outside, I see something, or the trigger is something like a misunderstanding. The scenery that I catch a glimpse of for a moment is really beautiful, and I feel like I get inspiration from that.
Whether the theme comes first or the material comes first, in any case, once you've gathered good images and materials, it's almost like you've created a work.

university, logic, presentation

LJ : I'm not sure about editors in general, but I think that the sensibility of editing is quite similar to the feelings of my colleagues who are working together on "almanacs".
By the way, Mr. Kaneshi returned to his hometown of Kyoto a while ago and continues to create while teaching at the university. After all, it's local, and do you feel more comfortable with Kyoto as your base?

TK : No, not at all. Actually, I don't really like Kyoto (laughs). I also think it would be better to have several bases.

LJ : Do you have an atelier apart from the university?

TK : I used to rent an atelier, but I couldn't help but separate it from when I was at university, so now I've rented it out and make most of my work in the university lab.

LJ : It's almost as if you're teaching a lot when you have a laboratory. If that's the case, wouldn't it be difficult if there was no such thing as a separation from your own creation?

TK : There was a time when I felt that way, but now there isn't much of a difference, and I don't really feel like I'm going to school to teach. It's like talking normally.

LJ : It's kind of a fresh environment. Talking with students will have an impact on your own creations.

TK : For better or worse, I can't help but become interested in social issues such as whether this is a problem among young people today.
Also, I am in charge of the sculpture major that I was enrolled in, but before I returned to university, I was creating without worrying about genres at all. Since I started teaching, I have been forced to think about the strengths and implications of sculpture, so I think it has given me an opportunity to reconsider my creations.
If you don't go out of your way to come in contact with them at university or something, you won't be able to get out of the comfort zone of yourself or the few people around you, and it's hard to come in contact with people of that age group.

LJ : For some reason, I also have a seat at Kyoto University of the Arts, and I think it's interesting to be able to organize the logic of what I'm doing once again. In the same way, when I look at artists who have come to teach at universities and seniors in the same industry, there are a lot of people who feel like after releasing an album, they move on to the next version, musicians. For example.
Once you look at your own activities from a third-party perspective, you will be divided into those who concentrate on the next stage of creation and activities and expand your expression, and those who will continue to focus on the teacher.

TK : Certainly. You have to make a presentation, or if you want to properly convey your thoughts to young people, you have to organize your talk, and at the same time you have to persuade the people above you in an academic sense. .

LJ : Since you are an artist, you are invited to participate, so you have to think about artistic contexts that you may not be aware of.

TK : There are both upper and lower, so that's right.

fan club, figure, beatles

LJ : We have a lot in common, such as our editorial sensibilities and teaching at a university in Kyoto.
By the way, for the <loosejoints> collection this time, we have selected a work called "teenage fanclub" from among several proposals.

TK : I've been creating works by combining various things, and the things that can be obtained cheaply change depending on the times and circumstances.
Around the time I started making this work, there were a lot of figures on the market, and they were extremely high quality and sold very cheaply. I think it was around 2000, but a friend who was working at Mandarake at the time gave me a lot of junk items at a low price, and I started making them because I thought I couldn't make them into my work.
In it, I combined only the hair parts. Moreover, I think it's a game or anime character, but there are many things that I've never seen before, and there are so many stories that I don't understand anymore, and the scale is all over the place. I thought it would be interesting if a new story could be created from the state in which they were combined.
Even from a sculptural point of view, hair is a very important part, and in both Western sculpture and Buddhist statues, it has important meaning not only in the conceptual part, but also in the context of connecting natural and artificial objects. Sometimes it becomes a symbol of a part of my body that separates from my identity. Expression of hair in sculpture is one of the most difficult things technically.
Moreover, since there are many 3D figures of 2D anime and game characters in the first place, there are things like going back and forth between dimensions. There is also a part that I wanted to express such a complicated situation.
Also, there is another motif that has become a big outdoor festival in Japan since the end of the 90's. I used to go there a lot when I was a student, but when you look at the gigantic stage from the very back, you can only see people's heads.
In that kind of situation, pop culture and youth culture seem to be wriggling. It feels like

LJ : Listening to that, even the title is perfect. At first I wondered why it was called "teenage fanclub".

TK : I thought it sounded like a "fan club". I often give titles from band names, song titles, and phrases, and I still do quite a lot.

LJ : We do exactly the same thing. In the first place, the themes of each issue of “almanacs” are all Beatles song titles.

TK : Oh, what a coincidence. Recently, I've been watching "Get Back", and I've been listening to a lot of The Beatles (laughs).

LJ : The situation continued like a scam that appeared, and it was completely different from the beginning, but that was amazing.

TK : No, it was really fun. From the point of view of a person who makes things, various elements are included. Also, my 2-year-old daughter who watched it with me was totally into the Beatles. I hum all the time, and when the song plays, I guess who's the vocalist. John, Paul, George.

Culture, Dimension, Inventory

LJ : Even George (laughs)! That's pretty imperial.
By the way, with the desire to have more people know more about the works and artists, and from the desire to create an environment where new cultures can be born through interaction that transcends generations through the works, <loosejoints> is like a culture media, and it's the same when I'm making a magazine, but when I put a three-dimensional work down to a two-dimensional piece like this "teenage fanclub", the meaning changes. I'm always feeling the tingle of fear that I'm going to lose the value of my work.
I think it's a very delicate part, so for future study, may I ask Mr. Kaneji what he thinks about it as an artist?

TK : I think it all depends on the person, but in my case it's interesting and I want to keep doing it. As I mentioned earlier, going back and forth between dimensions and media, especially when it comes to media such as T-shirts and clothes, not only distribution, but also the physicality and lifestyle of the wearer, and so on. I think it's interesting to see how the original changes as it straddles the wall.
So recently, I've been actively doing things like crossing over, and I was able to provide it to <loosejoints>, but I'm trying to develop "teenage fanclub" as a 2.5-dimensional print work with Ricoh.
In the last few years, I've started to get involved in projects like theater and performance, and before I knew it, I started working with people. I've been working on an individual basis for a long time, and I've finally come to think that I've developed my own unique technique or something. Because I was able to have such a real feeling, it may have been the first time in my life that I thought that I could not be with people.

LJ : It's already becoming a part of the world, such as video and stage.

TK : Yeah, so I gave up on music, but I can still work with my favorite artists on an equal footing. In order to do that, I've always thought that it would be nice to be able to express something in my own way in a different world.

LJ : I think that's really true. Actually, I became an editor for the same reason. I can't do it myself, but I can plan, connect people, and do something together, so I've found a place to belong! It was a big place.
In the first place, Mr. Kane was introduced to me by Mr. Junko, the manager of Boredoms, who I have been friends with for a long time, and Mr. Kane is also a fan of (Yamataka) EY Yo. I was able to make things together.

TK : I still have a lot of admiration for musicians, just like EY Yo (laughs).

EY Yo20 YearsBox

LJ : Of course, you are in the art world, but you also have a keen sense of the cultural context.

TK : They're completely equal, or rather, they're the same size. Occasionally, in interviews with art magazines, I'm asked, "Who was the artist who influenced you the most?"

LJ : Of course the sound is great, but EY Yo-chan's art is amazing too. (Artists) Mr. Jun Tsunoda and Mr. Tomoo Gokita also look at the lines that EY Yo draws and say, "How can I draw this?"

TK : It's really a mystery (laughs).

LJ : Come to think of it, this year marks the 20th anniversary of your writing career. Do you feel like putting out a solo exhibition or a collection of works?

TK : Most recently, in April, I had a solo exhibition at the Ichihara Lakeside Museum in Chiba, and at the same time I had a solo exhibition at Nadiff in Ebisu. Nadiff is planning to sell a box set packed with such things as publications, flyers, small works and goods, materials and CDs of works lying around in the atelier.

LJ : That's great. looking forward to it.

Published: almanacs Vol.02 (2022AW)


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