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Centered on artist and musician Ei Wada, Electronicos Fantasticos! (aka Nicos) is a project aimed at giving new life to outdated electrical appliances by turning them into electromagnetic musical instruments, eventually creating an entire orchestra in the process.

From January 18 to 26, the project will be setting up a pop-up base called Public Brother’s Base at Shibuya-san. Members of Nicos Orchest-Lab, the project’s collaborative team, will be present on weekday evenings during the event period to give talks and conduct discussions on the appliances they are currently busy turning into musical instruments, and on the steps they should take next.

The ideas that are born here will be put into practice on April 18 and 19, when the “Electronicos Fantasticos! – The Roar of Assembled Home Appliances” event will take place at Murasaki Park Tokyo. Everyone is welcome to join, so if you’re at all interested, do get involved in their electromagnetic vortex!

Event dates: January 18-26, 2020
Free entry
Barcoder experience: 10am-11pm
 
Ei Wada Kickoff Talk & Workshop
Date and time: January 18, 2020, from 2pm
Participants: Ei Wada, Ryoichi Kiyomiya

Nicos Orchest-Lab Open Meeting
Dates: January 19-25
Times: Mon-Fri 8pm-9pm, Saturdays and Sunday 2pm-3pm
Participants: Nicos Orchest-Lab members

Ei Wada x Power Generation Laboratory Closing Talk
Date and time: January 26, 2020, from 2pm
Participants: Ei Wada, Ryoichi Kiyomiya, Yuta Hirai (Minna-Denryoku Inc), Kumi Maekawa (I Just Inc.) and more

About Egg of Nicos

“Egg of Nicos” is a collective term that refers to the rough ideas proposed and drawn up by people who have participated in Nicos events. These ideas are published on the project’s official Tumblr. Please draw your image of Electronicos Fantasticos!

About Electronicos Fantasticos!

Centered on artist and musician Ei Wada, Electronicos Fantasticos! (aka Nicos) is a project aimed at giving new life to outdated electrical appliances by turning them into “electromagnetic musical instruments,” eventually creating an entire orchestra in the process. It presents forms of music not only for listening and watching, but for getting people involved and having them interact with the instruments as well.

The project was launched in February 2015 in Sumida, Tokyo as a resident art project calling for and gathering electronic devices that had outlived their usefulness. Through feedback from visitors, Wada considered the possibilities for further development of the project and, after a long process of trial and error, in November 2015 performed “First Ensemble Encounter Composition,” the project’s first concert. This opportunity allowed for the establishment of Nicos Orchest-Lab, a collaborative team for the project. A group of engineers worked on everything from programming and circuit board design to woodworking and metalworking projects. Thanks to the work of everyone on the project team, numerous “appliances turned into musical instruments” were born.

Another project team was assembled in Hitachi, a city in Ibaraki Prefecture renowned for its electronics, for participation in the Kenpoku Art 2016 festival. This resulted in explosive growth in the development of the instruments. At the “Hitachi Electrical-Current Art Composition,” another concert, CRT televisions and electric fans were converted into musical instruments for a performance in which Wada formed an ensemble together with the project’s Ibaraki-based members.

In 2017, Nicos held a revival festival where performers played festival music on old domestic electrical appliances and danced the Electro-Magnetic Bon Dance under Tokyo Tower, Japan’s most iconic radio tower, in memory of outdated technology.

The project initiated overseas activities in 2018, when it won an Honorary Mention at Ars Electronica, the world’s largest media arts festival. In 2019, Nicos formed a multinational orchestra and gave a live performance at Ars Electronica, kicking off a search for the new possibilities of an Electromagnetic Orchestra without Borders.

Nicos have created and developed numerous instruments, such as a CRT-TV Gamelan, an Exhaust Fan Synthesizer, an Electric Fan Harp, an A/C Harp, a Black Telephone Rhythm Machine, a “Barcoder,” a “Telelele,” and a “Fan-Tar.” They actively adapt the original functions of the devices, converting them into instruments and spinning fantasies as they dream about “Electromagnetic Native Music” and its festivals, which are born from outdated technology and other urban waste.

Nicos have created and developed numerous instruments, such as a CRT-TV Gamelan, an Exhaust Fan Synthesizer, an Electric Fan Harp, an A/C Harp, a Black Telephone Rhythm Machine, a “Barcoder,” a “Telelele,” and a “Fan-Tar.” They actively adapt the original functions of the devices, converting them into instruments and spinning fantasies as they dream about “Electromagnetic Native Music” and its festivals, which are born from outdated technology and other urban waste.