Concert, Screening

GIFT: Live Score by Eiko Ishibashi + Film by Ryusuke Hamaguchi

Left: Eiko Ishibashi, photo by Seiji Shibuya. Right: Ryusuke Hamaguchi.

  • Left: Eiko Ishibashi, photo by Seiji Shibuya. Right: Ryusuke Hamaguchi.

  • Sat, May 11, 2024

    Logan Center for the Arts

    Screening Room

    915 E 60th St

    RSVP Required

    Join us for the Chicago premiere of GIFT, a new collaboration by musician Eiko Ishibashi and filmmaker Ryusuke Hamaguchi. GIFT is a reprise of the pair’s previous ecopolitical thriller Evil Does Not Exist, reimagined now as an eerie silent film created specially to accompany Ishibashi’s musical performance. This screening at the Logan Center for the Arts features Ishibashi performing the film’s score live, with electronics and other sound material supplanting dialogue and diegetics.

    In GIFT, Mizubiki Village is located on a nature-rich plateau in Nagano, not so far from Tokyo. Takumi and his daughter Hana, who have lived there for generations, lead a modest life, following the cycle of nature. Development in the area has been gradual but things are about to change, as an entertainment agency, which has fallen into financial difficulties, plans to set up a glamping site there supported by government subsidies. The discovery that they intend to discharge sewage into the village water source causes unrest and the aftermath affects Takumi’s life as well.

    Eiko Ishibashi is a Japanese multi-instrumentalist whose work has ranged from acclaimed singer-songwriter albums to scores for film, television, theater and exhibitions to improvised music. She has collaborated with international artists such as Jim O’Rourke, Keiji Haino, Charlemagne Palestine, Merzbow, Giovanni Di Domenico, Oren Ambarchi, and many others. Her own records have been released by Drag City, Black Truffle, and Editions Mego, amongst others. Amongst her film scores is Ryusuke Hamaguchi’s Oscar-winning 2021 film Drive My Car for which she won the “Discovery of the Year” award at The World Soundtrack Awards and the “Best Original Music” award at the Asian Film Awards.

    Ryusuke Hamaguchi, an alumnus of the Graduate School of Film and New Media at the Tokyo University of the Arts, started to garner international recognition with his 2008 graduate film PASSION at film festivals both in Japan and abroad. His film Wheel of Fortune and Fantasy (2021) won the Silver Bear Grand Jury Prize at the Berlin International Film Festival. Drive My Car (2021) also received widespread recognition, including the awards for Best Screenplay at the 74th Cannes Film Festival and Best International Feature Film at the 94th Academy Awards. In 2023, his latest film Evil Does Not Exist received numerous awards including the Silver Lion Award (Grand Jury Prize) at the Venice Film Festival and Best Film at the BFI London Film Festival.