noble is thrilled to introduce the new addition to our family, video artist Mitsuo Toyama. Toyama is our new member following nakaban, the label’s first video artists with two pieces already to his name. Toyama will be releasing his first series of works, “Coffee Night” on DVD in March.
Toyama, who had first aspired to become a director of live film, was inspired by the freedom and the innumerable ways of expression made possible by animation and gradually shifted to animation based film. Today, he is a freelance video artist, mostly creating original animation as well as music videos (such as “luck” by Serph) and opening images to TV programs.
In addition to “You and I, And the wind”, which won him the Grand Prix award of the film section at the 2005 NHK “Digital Stadium” “Digista Award” and his claim to fame, the upcoming DVD includes a total of seven animation pieces created between 2005 and 2011 including the tranquil and loving, “The astronomical observation”, “Longing for the Venus”, Toyama’s version of “The Night of the Milky Way Train”, and “Coffee Night”, a story of a world traveling circus. Every piece has been created ever so carefully by Toyama, who has produced not only the artwork and script of each work but also the lines and music.
The highlight of Toyama’s work is in the warm sounds of the piano, accordion, music box, ukulele, and other instruments that accompany his nostalgic images drawn with watercolors and colored pencil. However, his work is also signatured by a river of foreign words (Toyama’s original words) whispered, tumbling upon one another. Keywords such as “”star”, “space”, “travel”, “children”, “foreign land”, and “anxiety” spoken by boys, girls, and mysterious but slightly humorous creatures, together create a poetic story which allow for a multitude of interpretations.
Somewhat reminiscent of Kenji Miyazawa, Mitsuo Toyama enchants us with a “warm but chilly” world of wonder. He promises new discovery and inspiration with every view. There are times when things like star gazing seem oh so important.