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Looking back on #BCTIONを振り返る


If we cannot secure our freedom in public spaces, it might not be a bad idea to update unused privately owned spaces into public ones.


In September of 2014, Tokyo saw the birth of a new art movement.



Yes, the hashtag is part of the title.


#BCTION is an art project aimed at giving new value to dead space in large cities, organized by artist OOYAMA Koutaro a.k.a. MON, and photographer SHIMAMOTO Joji.


It was a DIY attempt by an assembly of over 80 artists/collectives to turn an entire office building destined for demolition into one art space. Comprised of 9 real floors (including basement) and one virtual floor (the tenth), the venue for the very first #BCTION was held in the New Kōjimachi Building of Chiyoda Ward, Tokyo.


It developed mainly as murals and a borderless overlapping of expressions representing a variety of genres.



It succeeded in creative interaction; setting up a Free Wall inside the first floor entrance where viewers could freely contribute to a mural and an imaginary tenth floor that offered a space for people to freely upload images to create a virtual digital collage.



This widening of creativity blurred the distinction between artists and viewer and appeared to the city and to the internet as pure creation. With a vast scale of three thousand square meters in total floor space, and with the surprise factor of being held in an office street in Chiyoda, Tokyo, the event created quite the stir; being featured in newspaper, TV and even on the radio, along with the posting and sharing by artists and viewers on social network services, it gathered fifteen thousand visitors in seventeen days. Thanks to the power of creativity, the New Kōjimachi Building had one last lively revival in a completely new form, before its final rest.



The concept of #BCTION is “to connect the action of one person to that of another so as to make more creative power,” or perhaps even, “infinite actions, full of diversity, connected as a creative whole.”


Based on the image of one action growing into another, they took the first letter in ACTION and turned it into a B, while the hashtag (#) represents the entity as a whole.


"Between the 2011 disaster and the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, We live in the narrow crack of a metropolis in mid-metamorphoses. In the few years to come, many buildings will surely be destroyed in the preparation for the Olympics and the countermeasures for impending earthquakes."


Artist known as MON, one of the two leading organizers, explains the reasoning for starting the project:


"By reusing the dead space these demolition projects create in the city as spaces for art, we widen the chance for artists to actively contribute to society and increase the numbers of stages for expression. On top of that, we expand a new art market by creating ties between art and real estate.”


”After the exciting success of the very first #BCTION, we cannot help but feel further potential. This potential does not only reside in demolition-destined buildings, but also in unused ones that cannot be destroyed for certain reasons and in the wasted spaces of the city. It is a potential, that by creating ties between various types of real estate and art, we are able to realize a city that fosters creativity and spaces that can function as new attractions."


"We see the worth of #BCTION as being a new art field where a diversity of genres can participate together in being creative and we hope to make a place and opportunity that will attract the attention of the world towards a real art scene, right here in Japan."



At the end of August, 2015, MON and his team prepared another Free Wall on the first floor of the Shibuya TOD Building, gathering many viewers, participants and acclaim.


When and in what form will the next #BCTION project take place, only time will tell.


Check out the website here



You can purchase the art magazine here



















































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