Self Select: Installation view(「レゾナンス展」サントリーミュージアム[天保山])


Self Select Project has created a sensation in Nairobi.

The STANDARD, one of two biggest newspapers in Kenya featured Self Select Project on the second page. 28(Sat), March, 2009

On "ARTSCENE" art programme by KTN, one of the biggest TV company Yoshinari Nishio appeared and was interviewed about Self Select Project.
6(Mon), April, 2009, 25 minutes programme from PM7:30 

1) What is the Self Select project
Self Select Project is to exchange clothes with pedestrians at the street and to take pictures of those who wear exchanged clothes.
I started this project in Paris, France, 2007 and this time conducted it in Nairobi. 
I think Self Select Project as my lifework and I want to continue conducting this project all over the world. 

2) Why that name?
To exchange clothes is to exchange your own image. 
If you select your clothes at shops on your sense, you cannot exchange your image in a real mean. But if you select your clothes among real pedestrians' clothes at the street, I think, you can change your image to very different person. 

3) Why clothes and fashion, are there various types of clothes
In my childhood, I was not good at talking, so I came to appeal myself by wearing prominent, colorful clothes. Gradually I came to find that every clothes expresses every message and got interested in communication through clothes.

4) Why exchange clothes of anything else?
I want to exchange clothes like ordinary people exchanging their language to communicate.

5) Why the Self Select project?
Self Select Project is the most simple artwork among all of my works, and so more people are able to participate, and I can show my artistic concept to more people.

6) What was your intention? What did you hope to achieve
In general, those who communicate with you are limited for different reasons. Those reasons are because of the same class, the same company, the same family or something else.. When you in foreign country, your communication relationship is more restricted. My intention of this project is to break those restriction against communication and to create new relationship which you can create only by exchanging clothes.

7) What was its reception here in did people react when you asked them to give you their clothes?
Those who exchanged clothes with me made comments like "I exchanged my clothes because it's new idea" "because you can laugh at this project" "because interesting!". Their strong curiosity really surprised me. 
Those who rejected my idea were few than in Paris, and although they rejected, they seriously listened to my explanation.

8) How is this art...after all you are a contemporary artist?
In my definition, contemporary art is to create new human relationships, not to create objects like painting and sculpture. So my artworks related to creating communication through clothes are related to contemporary art, and I'm a contemporary artist.

9) How is Nairobi different from the other parts of the world you tried out?
In Paris, I felt that people guard their own image more strongly by their own clothes, they are afraid of breaking those image by exchanging clothes with me.
On the other hand, in Nairobi, people can easily think exchanging clothes as a sort of new games. 

10) Tell about exhibition
When it comes to exhibition, people usually think that they can see those artistic exhibition only inside museums. We, however, held our exhibition “Self Select in Nairobi” in the public cafe, which different people can visit as a part of daily life. Then, even those who aren’t interested in art could happen to see our exhibition and were so surprised. The simplicity of this project enabled those who came to this exhibition to react and understand what we did on the street and those concepts.

Final Works



Exhibition View 19th, Mar, 2009 @New Mos Mos Cafe

Member's Profile

Yoshinari Nishio
Yoshinari NISHIO was born in Nara, Japan, 1982. He has been studying Inter Media Art at Graduate School of Fine Arts, Ph.D. courses, Tokyo University of the Arts. He is also working as research fellow at both the Human Innovation Research Center (HiRC), Aoyama Gakuin University and the Studio for Heuristic Learning Environments (Heu-Le). 
As for main solo-exhibition, Yoshinari NISHIO (The Kyoto Costume Institute KCI Gallery, Japan, 2006), Self Select (Gallery Cesar Harada, France, 2007). As for main group-exhibition, Media City Seoul 2006 (Seoul City Museum, Korea, 2006), IDEAL Forum (Café Moskau, Germany, 2008), Happiness In Everyday Life (Contemporary Art Gallery, Art Tower Mito, Japan, 2008). As for main workshop, PLAY COSTUME (College of CENTRO, Mexico, 2008). As for award, Good Design Award (2006, 2008 in Japan), Kids Design Award (2007 in Japan), Japan-EU Design Competition Semi-Grand Prix (2008), etc. His work book “YOSHINARI NISHIO Fashionscape” (fabre8710, 2006) in print now.

Takashi Usui
Undergraduate course at Faculty of Policy Management, Keio University (JAPAN)
2008.8〜 Programme coordinator of ARTIST IN JIDOKAN for Japanese children and Management of STUDIO FOR FORMING ON WORDS by Japanese Artist, Yoshinari NISHIO
2008.6 Creation of music clip for the event NICE TO MEET YOU vol.4 by Japanese musician Nobuki UEDA
2007.7 Assistant and Documenting of SELF SELECT Project in Paris, FRANCE

Aya Tkagi
Undergraduate course at Department of Liberal Art, Saitama University (JAPAN)
2008.8〜 Photographer of STUDIO FOR FORMING ON WORDS by Japanese Artist, Yoshinari NISHIO

Sakiko Sone
Sakiko SONE was born in Nara, Japan, 1982. She is studying African culture at Graduate School of Asian and African Area Studies(ASAFAS), Kyoto University. 
She has managed and assisted Yoshinari Nishio's artistic activities several times, especially his oversea exhibitions and workshops, such as Germany and Mexico. As for Self Select in Nairobi, she has been supporting this project at Nairobi as local coordinator by collaborating with Kenyan staffs while studying local language, Kiswahili.

Linda Abbah Dinda
She was born in 1987. She went to Donholm primary school, Makego Girls High School, and obtained Diploma in Air Travel and Tiketing, IATA Certified. She also passed Level 4 and 3, Japanese Language Proficiency Test. Her hobbies are making friends, reading literature, exploring different cultures, watching football and dancing. Her motto in Japanese is “Naseba Naru” “Isshou Kenmei” “Yareba Nandemo Dekiru,” Welcome to Kenya, hope we will have this kind of projects in Kenya and the rest of Africa again!

Habert Simon Ayieng
He was born in 1982 in old Busia district. He went to Lugala primary school then joined Ganjula high school then Butula high school. 
After school he joined Grand regency hotel where he used to work as waiter and visitor socialiser. He then joined Nextech collage and Linkup Institute respectively where he studyed computer and some logistic courses. He has had to work in various organization including Wans insurancy agency where he used to work as sales and officer then proceeded to Express Pauhages where he took over the position of logistic officer. 
Currently he is studying Japanese and he is very interested in knowing the language and traveling to Japan. A Self Select project has given him eager to work with contemporary arts and exchanging culture, behavior and clothes with Japanese. He is wishing everyone good health and good support through the project. Enjoy our project and welcome. Mr. Yoshinari Nishio who is the president of the organization has really supported me and the project itself in Nairobi and we are looking forward to see the project extending to different areas of the world.

Sauti Haji
He was born in 1980, Busia. He went to Namasali primary school,then joined Christian Secondary school. He studied Sales & Marketingobtained Certificate in computer packages at Rimits computer collage. He has worked at various companies like Cussion & sons company as clerk, Spin Knit Dairy (Tuzo) as depot sales supervisor, Electoral commission of Kenya as counting clerk, Wang Agencys as sales executive. He has recently met with Japanese friends, got interested in Japanese culture and studies Japanese language hard through real communication. 

Special Thanks

Atushi Uemura
He was born in 1979 in Fukuoka, Japan. 
He has been involved in many activities such as construction of schools and wells in Garissa, Kenya, since last year. He likes so much making something by himself. 
He is attracted and supports this project because of following reasons...
-- This project could make people in Nairobi feel "Salama (peaceful in Kiswahili)." The gap between stereotyped atomosphere of Nairobi and "Salama" which this project can give us is very interesting for him. 
-- This project could suggest new ways of communication between foreigners and locals.
-- This project could add new tastes to the atomosphere of Nairobi.

He is manager of New Mos Mos Cafe where we hold exhibition. We appreciate his kindness and support.

Making Process 17th, Mar, 2009 @Doonholm

Making Process 16th, Mar, 2009 @University Way & Gikomba Market

Making Process 15th, Mar, 2009 @Central Park & Tom Mboya Street

Making Process 14th, Mar, 2009 @Uhuru Park



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