2020
Upopoy National Ainu Museum

Japan’s first-ever national facility that shares the Ainu history and culture, Upopoy, made its grand opening on July 12th Sunday in Shiraoicho, Hokkaido.
It consists of a folklore museum, an interactive field museum, and an Ainu symbiotic park – a hub to revive and develop the fading Ainu culture once again.

JKD was given the privilege to work on the huge projection mapping & lighting show – the highlight night event for Upopoy – that started on Saturday, July 18th. The 14 minutes delicately and dynamically hand drawn full animation, in sync with soul-stirring music and sound design, illustrates the genesis myth of the Ainu culture. The visual piece is projected mainly onto the walls of the dome-shaped Cultural Exchange Hall, as well as the surrounding hills, rivers, and sculptures. Lights set up in various places across the vast site syncs tightly with the music and mapping images and bring about a mystical spatial presentation that pulls the audience right into the story. We can proudly say that this piece definitely ranks in JKD’s TOP 3 audio-visual works. Music was composed by OKI, a world-class musician and leader of the OKI Dub Ainu Band, as well as Kuniyuki Takahashi, based in Hokkaido but well known across the globe. 4 animators, Ryoji Yamada, Tatsuyoshi Ariyoshi, Hana Ono, Yutaro Kubo put their heads together in collaboration to create the most astonishing and authentic animation expression possible. The opening and ending motion is by Shotaro Tomiyama + Ko Kudo from the JKD visual team, and the overall visual direction by Shane Lester.
This special feature is shown every day except for Monday until 8/30. After September, Sat, Sun, and Public Holidays, a few times per day after sunset. No reservations needed.
If you plan to visit Hokkaido, you mustn’t miss it!