'Toki' uses 3D printing and projection to represent time

Akinori Goto is a stop-motion animator who has translated his art to work with modern materials and techniques. Goto creates smooth movement by passing simple light through highly complex wire mesh sculptures. He’s one of several artists picked to exhibit their work at SXSW this year, and his installation, Toki, is one of the most impressive on display.

Toki consists of three sculptures of varying complexity, each created with the same technique. Goto first crafts 3D animations of a ballet dancer, before taking each frame and translating it into a wire mesh sculpture. In the darkened room the pieces are installed in, beams of light are projected onto the mesh. Each cross-section of the sculpture represents a single frame of the animation, and so as the light passes through it, a visage of a ballerina dancing appears.

Goto has been working on this technique for some time now — he says it’s patent pending — but his most recent work ramps up the complexity by several degrees. While the first two sculptures (which had been exhibited prior to SXSW) are each continuous forms, his new work contains 24 unique sculptures. Each sculpture represents an hour of the day, and Goto says he is trying to express the relationship between time and movement, and “capture the beauty and nature of time itself.”

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