James Jack

“Dirt Stage” in Niigata

by on May.23, 2015, under Exhibits, Recent Activities

WDA_dirt_samples2015.5_ed2lrA new artwork is being made by the World Dirt Association (James Jack, Yoshitaka Nanjo and Shotaro Yoshino) for the Land and Water Art Festival which will open in Niigata Prefecture during July 2015.

This artwork is being created through the collection, cataloging and display of 100+ dirt samples from across the world. The main goal of “Dirt Stage: 土の時間を育てる” artwork is to find creative ways of representing the life of dirt.

Please contact us if your are interested in sending a sample of dirt from where you live to become a part of this artwork which engages directly with the land we live on. For more information please see the Water and Land Art Festival website


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Artist Talk in Singapore

by on Mar.09, 2015, under Recent Activities

20150211 - James Jack - Poster - CMYK - For print copy

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”Khayalan Island” exhibition in Tokyo

by on Dec.21, 2014, under Exhibits, Recent Activities

Sample video clip showing boat and artifact from current exhibition of “Khayalan Island” at Tokyo University of the Arts Museum by James Jack

For more information please see the following website: http://dr-exhibition.geidai.ac.jp/summary/jamesjack/ (Japanese only)

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Boat to Khayalan Island, LAUNCHING CEREMONY

by on Oct.25, 2014, under Exhibits, Recent Activities

October 26th, 14:00-

Art Base Momoshima

boat_ceremony copy

100Ideas_lr 100Ideas_lr

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Searching for Khayalan Island

by on Sep.15, 2014, under Exhibits, Recent Activities

100 Ideas on Tomorrow’s Island: What can art do for a better society?

Momoshima Art Base

September 13- October 26, 2014


How can we find Khayalan Island today? This project starts by reviving stories of this island from the past that might otherwise disappear. Searching for clues to rediscover an island lost during the 19th century, a contemplative boat voyage was taken to Kashima. The view from this nearby island where people are extinct allows us to glimpse at the fragile existence of this island where we currently exist. This artwork is part of a multi-site search for material evidence of this lost island from the turbulent past.

Challenges abound in our everyday environment. This attempt to find Khayalan Island may be met with failure. How are we to create an imaginary vessel within the harsh social and ecological realities of today? Fortunately residents have drawn maps of this island with their expansive and creative minds in a workshop held earlier this year. If participants of all ages, backgrounds and lifestyles work together to create a shared vision, travel to this imaginary island might become reality.

Boats in the harbor are fading into the seascape. The search for a vessel to ride on has begun. Recycled materials are collected in each village to build a boat capable of traveling to Khayalan Island. The process of building a boat with recycled parts from the community is intentionally exhibited here as parts are assembled one by one. This vessel composed of discarded materials points the way for rich stories from the past to be recomposed into a bright future.

IMG_8162 copy

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Sunset House documentary screening

by on Jun.03, 2014, under Exhibits, Recent Activities


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Maebashi Film Festival

by on May.25, 2014, under Exhibits, Recent Activities

The 40 minute documentary about my artwork “Sunset House: Language as the house of Being” will be screened at the Maebashi Film Festival. This will be an opportunity to reflect on the project at a crucial point in its life. Just recently the garden has been rebuilt to accommodate the new road built above the house and through two years of negotiation the basalt stone wall has been rebuilt in the local technique of slanted crossing stones. The project will continue to be opened to the public in the summer so this screening will open some of the newest layers of this project which engages with the language of the community as a house of existence.

Screen Shot 2014-05-25 at 11.11.56 PMFor more details regarding the festival see the following website: link here. “Sunset House: Language as the house of Being” will be screened on June 1st starting at 13:00 at the former Yasuda Securities Bank Building. I will also participate in a discussion held after the screening together with Assistant Professor Tomoko Shimizu of Tsukuba University link here. For those of you who can make the reasonable trip out from Tokyo to Gunma please come out to enjoy this unique opportunity to learn more about my artwork along with other artists and media scholars.

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Searching for an unknown island

by on Apr.30, 2014, under Exhibits, Recent Activities

I am holding a series of workshops on Momoshima Island this week for a new artwork to be made for the project “100 Ideas on Tomorrow’s Island: What art can do for a better society.” On the first day we will generate ideas of what this island might look like, what kind of plants are growing there and how it might be named. The second day will include walks in the Tomari town neighborhood investigating the local history and stories of boat journeys. On the third day we will take an actual boat trip to search for this unknown island while taking notes, observing sounds and watching for signs of an island that is rumored to have vanished.

a previous dango stone


For part of my ongoing research into contingent environments I was stimulated to hear a local story on a visit to Momo Island a few months ago. There was a distinctively large stone named “dango” on the tip of the penninsula right behind the small shrine in the town of Tomari. It was a sign post in the local community and part of the seascape that could be seen from most outlooks on the Seto Inland Sea. One day an intensive storm came into town. While everyone was securing their houses and boats to protect from damage the dango stone was swallowed up by the sea. Its soft sandstone base is all that remains now in the view of the sea from the small road on the tip of the town. Changes in the place are expressed in the living memories of the stone in the stories told by the island residents.

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Musical Gathering Video Release

by on Jan.07, 2014, under Exhibits, Recent Activities

The creative energy of four musicians, one artist and an entire community were expressed in this musical event held on November 3, 2013 at Sunset House: Language as the house of Being. A special video has been released to share this event held at the end of the Setouchi International Art Festival with new audiences. Please enjoy at the following link below:

Artist: James Jack

Musicians: Ryu Furusawa, Akira Tanabe, Makoto Noumi, Bruce Huebner

Sponsored by: U.S. Embassy, Tokyo

Co-operation: Kounoura Village, Shodoshima Town, Shigeru Moriguchi, Etsuko Hamawaki, Makio Kuroshima, Yoshiaki Kawata, Mikio Tamura

Videography: Goun Video Graphic

Sunset House Musical Gathering video link

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Talk Show

by on Dec.15, 2013, under Recent Activities


Artists Talk Show

jj sunset house nov 2013



James Jack (Sunset House: Language as the house of Being)

Koji Yamamoto (Awashima Saltworks)

Keisuke Yunoki (Island Scene)

MC: Yuki Numamoto (West Japan Broadcasting Television)

December 23, 2013.  14:00-16:00

Free Admission

Kagawa Prefectural Museum 2F Rotunda

Takamatsu, 5-5 Tamamacho

Tel: 087-822-0002

Sponsored by the Agency for Cultural Affairs Japan

DOWNLOAD event flyer here

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