message vol.1by Takahiro Morita on 2007.01.27 •
Hello, I’m the organizer of FESN, and I direct all FESN products. For those who visit this website always, and those for the first time as well,Japanese, people in far countries who came here by chance, skaters,non-skaters, music addicts, film addicts, curious people, dope heads…
We FESN would like to thank all coincidental encounters. Other than through our visual pieces, we only had medias such as magazines and public broadcastings to send out our messages. Now that 12 years has passed since the foundation, we started our website last year. We believe that many people has stopped by and got to know what we are doing. I’m Japanese and I cannot speak any other language, but with a help from my cooperator who takes time to translate, this website can be understood by people in overseas. There is a time lag in updating between Japanese site and English site, this is the problem that FESN is facing right now.
From 1995 to 2000,we had limited our activities only in Japan with intention. Why? There are 47 prefectures (state in the U.S.) in Japan. Each prefecture has their own tradition and custom. Although the language we speak is the same, there are many different dialects. In the south end Okinawa and north end Hokkaido,there was a history of an independent race who used to live and rule the place. Even though I live in Japan, I could have never felt the reality of it if I had not actually set my foot into those places. I have actually visited each and every prefectures, experiencing and feeling the atmosphere of the places. I wanted to always observe the skaters who actually skate there, communicate, and understand them before I put them in my film. 47 places in Japan until today and of course I have visited more places than that. There are 5 videos that we produced focusing on Japanese skate scene so far. I do not believe that I have covered every single skate scene in Japan, but with the video title “43-26″ released in 2000, we were able to cover all places in Japan. I remember feeling that I could put an end to the intentional domestic activities.
FESN is a production that I, a complete audio-visual amateur back then starting with no idea of what I had to do. Therefor it was a repetition of discovery and reconsideration in the past 12 years. From the year 01, for the purpose of expanding our activities and from my curiousity, I started to feel that I wanted to experience as many skate scene as possible in the world. First, the cities that I have always wanted to visit, the east coast of the States, New York,then Philadelphia. On August 24th 2001, I left my country with my skateboard and a video camera to New York.The things that I saw…The things that experienced…It was indeed the WORLD. “Confusion of the world, distress, poverty, hatred, plunderage,exploitation…” I could have never experienced them if I was in Japan.Negative words stand out because I realized the differences between the circumstances of Japan and the world. After that, I visited 7 places in the States, 3 places in England, Denmark and Copenhagen, skating with the local skaters and filming them during my long stay. Even when I’m in Japan, I tried to skate with skaters who would come from overseas as much as possible. It is a fact that there were misunderstandings and miscommunications here and there, not being able to understand each other from time to time.
The problem that FESN is facing as I said ealier comes from differences in language. The world is huge, I understand that within large amount of people, same amount of differences exist. But we are skaters. Even though the language we speak and the customs are different,it is not a problem when we are skating. Skateboarding as a communication method may not make money, but it connects people. I believe skateboarding is about expressing themselves without concealing, that is how it should be, action speaks louder than words. Today we are working on our audio-visual project that we started in 2001 for 7 years. In this project,I have actually visited places in the world, skated amongst local skaters,ate same things as them, used same transportation system using their language the best I can, tried to understand the skaters and their culture the best I can. We have always done our thing in this style. We have always produced skate videos in this style. When I was in the States the other day during a bussiness meeting, a famous skater told me, “Your skate video is too long. Skate video now is something you attach to a board so that the board will sell. It’s just an extra.”That is what he thinks, and even if most of the skaters think like that, it is never like that for us. Taking 7 years, 12 years, my whole life, for my people and the future of my family, remember, there is a guy creating,dreaming of the world peace here in Japan. You cannot measure things with a narrow mind, that is the dificulty in this world. And broadening the mind everyday little by little, that is where the delight of life is at.
Directer of FESN Takahiro Morita