For Distraction Series 5, our Director, Momoyo Homma, leads us on a tour of the Reversible Destiny Lofts MITAKA – In Memory of Helen Keller, in Tokyo, Japan. We are very grateful to Nobu Yamaoka, the director of the two documentary films presented in Distraction Series 1 and 2, “Children Who Won’t Die” (2010) and “We” (2011), for filming this experience. Follow along as Momoyo guides us from the building entrance up to one of the lofts, where she walks us through how this unique living environment affords ample opportunity to stretch and move the body in new ways. Special guests Yuma and Sono, two of the children who appeared in “Children Who Won’t Die”, speak about their experiences from their time living in one of the lofts. Speculating about what it would be like to live in a Reversible Destiny City, Yuma imagines that there would be no war in the future, an observation that Arakawa himself frequently made. Rokka, a two-year-old who currently lives in one of the lofts, also demonstrates fun ways to use the space.
In addition to this private tour, we want to bring to your attention a 15-minute episode of the NHK World program “Close to ART”, which features the Reversible Destiny Lofts MITAKA. With some background on the history and philosophy of the lofts, including footage of Madeline and Arakawa, this episode provides a great complement to Momoyo’s tour and we highly recommend it:
We hope to one day welcome you all to the lofts in person! Until then, we remain:
Yours in the reversible destiny mode,
Distraction Series 5:
Virtual tour of Reversible Destiny Lofts
Directed by Nobu Yamaoka (RTAPIKCAR,Inc.)
NHK WORLD 「Close to ART: The Reversible Destiny Lofts Mitaka」
Available until April 15, 2021
“The Reversible Destiny Lofts Mitaka” is a colorful group of housing units located in Mitaka, a sleepy Tokyo suburb. Designed by artists Arakawa Shusaku and Madeline Gins in 2005, the buildings function as both art and living space. The 9 lofts are designed “not to die,” taking residents out of their comfort zones with spherical rooms, bumpy floors and more. We talk to those who live and work here as we discover what motivated Arakawa and Gins to build the lofts in the first place.