ANPO: Art X War
Introduction by Michael Bourdaghs, Associate professor, East Asian Languages and Civilizations.
Through a mesmerizing collage of paintings, photographs and films, ANPO: Art X War relates longstanding resistance to U.S. military bases in Japan from the perspective of its foremost contemporary artists.
“Japan’s relationship with America has always been complicated,” muses artist Aida Makoto, “always vacillating between love and hate….” The array of artwork vividly resurrects a forgotten period of Japan’s history, while highlighting the insidious effects of “ANPO,” Japanese shorthand for the U.S.-Japan Mutual Security Treaty.
In 1960, millions of Japanese citizens from all walks of life came together in a democratic uprising largely forgotten today. This nationwide movement left an indelible mark on the creative work of the artists who participated, many of whom eventually rose to international prominence. Director Linda Hoaglund reconstructs these artists’ stories, unearthing artwork that has been hidden from public view in museum vaults for over half a century. She was "compelled to excavate this vast cultural legacy to tell the story of the ...protests, the events that provoked them and how the U.S. bases continue to impact Japan.” The film is a priceless record of how Japanese artists grappled with politics and the U.S. military presence in Japan, spinning their hope, despair and outrage into art.
ANPO was honored by Japan's Agency for Cultural Affairs nomination for its prestigious annual Best Film Prize.
(2010, USA /Japan, DV, 89 min, Japanese and English with English subtitles)
Co-sponsored by the Committee on Japanese Studies.