This exhibition places the spotlight on posters in CCGA’s DNP Graphic Design Archives Collection that in some way deal with ties and bonds of various kinds.
In the immediate wake of the Great East Japan Earthquake and tsunami disaster, the word “kizuna” (絆) , meaning bond, was often seen and heard. Not a day went by when it wasn’t part of the discussions filling the media. In the 10 years since then, much has occurred in Japan, including numerous other natural disasters of major scale and plans to hold the Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games. Today, as memories of the 2011 disaster gradually fade, occasions when “kizuna” is mentioned are far fewer. And while many people took great solace from this word back in 2011, “kizuna” has perhaps been too often and too easily adopted as a slogan – almost a clichéd byword – in campaigns of all sorts.
Ties and bonds take various forms. Ties between things that are inherently separate and distinct can have a positive aspect, one entity supporting the other, but they can also have a negative side. Every tie, every bond, is different.
In recent years, the realms of the arts and culture are increasingly used as resources for achieving revitalization of local communities and building ties. While such moves close the gap between the arts and society, they also run the risk of being viewed merely as tools for gathering people together.
One role of graphic design is to take something abstract, or a message, and give it visual form. To take what is invisible to the eye – a concept or slogan or philosophy – and render it as something visible that can be conveyed to others, is one aspect of the act of designing. What this means is that graphic design is at all times in an inseparable relationship with a tie, a connection, through the medium of communication. By looking at how graphic design has expressed ties and bonds, and then reconsidering today, 10 years after the earthquake disaster, the graphics of the expressions found there, this exhibition examines how such expression has evolved.
We hope this exhibition will provide an opportunity to ponder our relationships with each other in the world of the near future, after the pandemic which has made it necessary to keep distances and avoid direct personal interactions.
Closed: Every Monday (Next day if Monday is a public holiday), April 30 and May 6.