TODOME Da Fox (Noe Iwai)   

TODOME Da Fox (Noe Iwai) 

I am a multidisciplinary artist and researcher, working across performance, poetry, storytelling, comedy, painting, sound, moving images, and theatre-making. I often perform with a 'Fox Mask', an essential medium for my work and the signifier of the animal 'Fox' which represents both Japanese and British cultures.

I moved from Japan to the UK with my mother and older sister when I was four years old.  I became interested in history and story-telling as I began to feel a discrepancy between the history I had learned from her grandparents and the history I was taught at school. Brought up and educated in Japan until the age of 15, I returned to England again after finishing junior high school. Since then I have been UK based, becoming a resident in 2022.

 

The experience of life in the West as a Japanese female is an integral part of my work. Within this, traditional gestures and cultural rituals of various countries mirror my multicultural heritage and upbringing, as well as my interpersonal and emotive narratives. These relationships centering on care and respect for family and friends in Japan and in England are ongoing veins of research in my work, as a connection to the broader cultural past.  I also focus on the importance of notions of equality, inclusivity, and openness. I, therefore, emphasize the exclusive characteristics of Kabuki (Japanese traditional theatre performance) and Matsuri (Japanese festivals held in the summer). For example, in my performance of 'Fox Rain’ (2017), I questioned the exclusivity of Kabuki by creating a group performance referring to elements of Kabuki, but without sexual or racial boundaries. The choreography was also inspired by Butoh, a more modern (post-war) genre of Japanese dance performance.

Work

My practice is a dialogue between politics, humanity, and poetics. I challenge culture, tradition, and manners and they are often expressed through revelry and humorous expression. I utilize performance as my medium to interact with natural materials, sound work, poetry, and painting; all using theatrical methods that could also be interpreted as installations. 

 

The desire to embody the fox and harness their capricious nature has offered me a totemic methodology and vehicle to provoke people’s awareness towards socio-political issues, Whether the foxes are shallow or prudent, supportive or revengeful to humans, can never be answered— but their actions, remnants, and traces of spirituality leave people to wonder. And it is through this space of doubt that I hope to explore lost narratives and relations between nature and humans, as well as the way of think about nature, Without wishing to essentialize, my experience in the West has witnessed a manifestation of fear of nature that absolutizes the subject, while in Japan, people tend to co-exist with nature and relativizes it. Hostility does not factor into this equation. 

 

I am therefore deeply interested in recreating the ‘foxes’ trickery’ by performing in the open air - most of her performances take place in nature with minimal additions of man-made objects. Restricted sites such as theatres, churches, or houses, are therefore avoided in my performance work. 

Japanese Buddhist interpretations and the sanctification and spiritualization of objects are also part of Japan's great culture, a country where yokai (monsters), ghosts, and incarnations have long been familiar to the public.

Despite the predominantly Japanese expression in my work that seems to leave afterimages in my and my viewer’s mind, I am greatly inspired by British comedy and theatre, particularly how these performances effectively shift between the humorous moment to serious scenes. 

Education

London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art

- Semester Classical Acting, Sep 2021 - Dec 2021

Royal College of Art

- MRes Fine Arts & Humanities,  2019  - 2020 

Royal College of Art

- MA Contemporary Art Practice: Performance, 2017 - 2019  

Goldsmiths University of London

- BA FINE ART  2013 - 2017

 

Cambridge Centre for Sixth-form Studies

- A level: Fine Art, Design and Photography, 2011 - 2013

 

Licensed Victuallers School

- A level: Fine Art, Music and English, 2010-2011

Work and Assisting

July 2015 - September 2015

RED  (play) - John Logan

Directed by Eriko Ogawa

Produced by SIS COMPANY

New National Theatre, Tokyo, Japan.

Painting Leadership and Scenic Design for the theatre play RED.

- Teaching actors how to paint the under layers of Mark Rothko’s painting using theatrical methods.

- Painted seven of well-known Mark Rothko’s paintings (3m in size) for the theatre set.

2022 January - (Current)

Film "Thieves" by Michelle Williams Gamaker

Assisting Filmmaker Dr. Michelle Williams Gamaker - Casting & Choreography

Assisting with her upcoming film project. The role is to assist in the casting process and choreograph the movement for the scene.

Exhibitions and Presentations

2021

-What Do We Know Anyway?

Bloc Project
71 Eyre Lane, Sheffield
10th July - 17th July 2021

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2020

-Make It Public

Jonathan Ashley-smith and Diane Ashley smith in conversation with Noe Iwai - LINK

-Design Museum online link

11th of July

-DIG

Presented work - Human Play A-Loan Game

Performed from at home in Portobello, London

-San Mei Gallery online link

13th - 27th of May

-Work in Progress Show (WIP)

Presented work - Bug Loves MoーNey: 金食い虫

At the Royal College of Art, London

-Dyson Gallery

31 of January - 2nd of February

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2019

 

-DisOrder LIVE ART FESTIVAL

Presented work - Fox Says: 狐言葉

Lichfield St, WV1 1DU

-Wolverhampton Art Gallery

5.6.7th of July

-SHOW 2019

Presented work - Fox Says: 狐言葉

1 Hester Rd, SW11 4AN

-Royal College of Art

28th of June - 7th of July

-ENCOUNTER

Presented work - Cocoon 冬季繭 II

Sheraton Park, Durham, DH1 4FL

-Ustinov College

2nd March

 

-Stage of Life

Presented work - Fox Says: 狐言葉

171 Uxbridge Road, HA5 4EA,

Harrow, UK

27th February 

 

-DisORDER Presents Disorders

Presented work - Fox Says: 狐言葉

92-94 Wallis Road, E9 5LN, London

-Studio 9294

27th February 

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2018

-INTERESTED? INTERESTED? INTERESTED?

At Grow Tottenham, Ashley house, Ashley Rd, London

'Word or no words? Wine bottle or a bottle? Notes or paper?'

OCTOBER

- ANOTHER FIVE MINUTES OF YOUR TIME

At The Doodle bar

JUNE

- Revolve  Performance Art Days

At Uppsala, Sweden

MAY

- Live pt 1 

At the Royal College of Art, London

APRIL

 - CAP Baret

At the Royal College of Art, London

‘The Sound of Wind Chimes’

MARCH

- ‘Rumble to the Core Mexico Fundraiser’

At the Deptford Cinema, London, United Kingdom

FEBRUARY

- Work in Progress Show (WIP)

At the Royal College of Art, London

‘Beyond the Curve is Cold’

JANUARY

 

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2017

 

- Degree Show

At the Goldsmiths College, London

‘Fox Rain - 狐雨

JULY

 

 - ‘Inhabit’

 At the 137 – 139 Copeland Road, London

MARCH

 

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2016

 

- ‘On the Threshold ll.’

At the Oriental Museum in Durham, Supported by Durham University,

The Oriental Museum, and Ustinov College, United Kingdom.

JANUARY

 

2021

- ‘Instruction For the Sky’

by Eduardo Navaro

At the Gasworks London

15th Sept 

2019

- ‘CUSP’

by Isobel Adderley

At the UK YOUNG ARTISTS CITY TAKE OVER : NOTTINGHAM

8th - 9th of Feb 

2018

- ‘On the importance of Insects’

by Hattie Godfrey

At the New Shoreditch Theater 

2017

- ‘QWAKE’

by Isobel Adderley

At the Dungeness sound mirrors

2016

- ‘CUSP’

by Isobel Adderley

At the Goldsmiths College London

Collaborations 

2020

-Make It Public

Jonathan Ashley-smith and Diane Ashley smith in conversation with Noe Iwai

-Design Museum online link

11th of July

 

 

2019

'Do you Wanna Play?' by Noe Iwai Featured in  'Nothinhg Really Matress'  by PANICATTACK DUO

Bloomberg New Contemporaries 2018

At the South London Gallery

FEBUARY