The Stranger's Always You


This is a duo performance by Leif Holmstrand and Hiroko Tsuchimoto with an idea of the stranger/other position. At an entrance of an exhibition hall the audience members were distributed surgical masks which can be nowadays described as a “Japanese symbol”.  Numerous people in Japan wear these masks not only to prevent spreading their own sickness but also to protect themselves from other’s illnesses in public.

In the middle of the room, there was a pile of black chairs and Holmstrand and Tsuchimoto stood beside covered with big black garbage bags, with a background sound composed by Holmstrand. After a while, Tsuchimoto got out from the bag and started to gaze at each member of the audience. She selected some of them and invited them to play musical chairs. While Swedish children’s songs playing, the audience members walked around the chairs with masks on. From time to time, Holmstrand abruptly sang a song called “The Stranger’s Always You”. The game was over when the background music stopped.


Performance with Leif Holmstrand at Uppsala Art Museum in Uppsala, Sweden

As a part of the exhibition "Translation Theme Park - Japanese Comtemporary Art" curated by Leif Holmstrand

(video by Martin Söderblom)