b. 1959, Japan
Shin-Ichi Arai lives and works in Tokyo. He studied Chinese modern literature at Tokyo Metropolitan University and later majored in printmaking (Intaglio/Copper printing). Since 1982 he has been creating performances as well as experimenting in sound, voice and language performance actions. As a Japan Overseas Cooperative Volunteer he taught at Nyumba ya Sanaa Art school in Zanzibar, Tanzania for two years from 1992 to 1994 where he experienced various insights into the relationship between culture and politics in contemporary society. This led to the radical social-political performances that are exemplary of his work. In his raw and direct style, Arai’s body appears as a site of social tension presented with humour, yet biting criticism, often exposing the conservative and xenophobic cultural tendencies and contradictions in global and local situations. He has performed regularly in Japan and has also presented his works internationally in China, Canada, Korea, Thailand and elsewhere.