Our feardom of Expression and Internalization of Censorship

ARTISTS’ GUILD + Arts Commons Tokyo

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Editors: Koki Tanaka (ARTISTS’ GUILD) + Yuki Kageyama (Arts Commons Tokyo)
Translators: Yuki Okumura (ARTISTS’ GUILD) + Art Translators Collective


A composition created in collaboration between the ARTISTS’ GUILD and the NPO Arts Commons Tokyo, released in tandem with the MOT Annual 2016 Loose Lips Save Ships exhibition currently being held at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Tokyo. This work brings focus to the theme of ‘self restraint’, a subject of debate across various fields in recent years.


Involved in the production of this piece is ARTISTS’ GUILD member and artist Koki Tanaka, working side by side with NPO Art Commons Tokyo member and editor Yuki Kageyama as project editors, together with ARTISTS’ GUILD member/artist Yuki Okumura collaborating with Art Translator’s Collective in providing the English translation. It is a production composed with primary focus on a series of five interviews featuring ARTISTS’ GUILD members Koki Tanaka, Hikari Fuji, Meiro Koizumi, Michiko Tsuda and Yasuto Matsumoto, together with guests Tami Yanagisawada (philosopher, scholar of Christianity), Yoshihisa Otani (owner of the contemporary art gallery Kanransha), Hiroshi Hijikata (director of Tōkai Television’s Constitution of the Yakuza), Akira Takayama (screen director, Port B), and Keisuke Oka (architect of the Arimasuton building), with each of these dialogues tying into various keywords and other ideas surrounding the concept of ‘self-restraint’ — giving form to the piece as a whole. The composition exists as a new project that stands apart from the ‘Kisei no Seiki’ exhibition, composed into a single volume.


We are all in the belief that we are speak freely within this society. But to what extent are we truly free? Are you actually at liberty to speak as you wish? Could it be that the freedom you possess hangs in suspension within the negotiations between yourself and the pressures of this society? Are you not actually censoring yourself in the name of self restraint? Or, in the case that you were truly able to speak as you wish, would there be those who suffer as a result of that freedom? – Quoted from the main text.



Editors: Koki Tanaka (ARTISTS’ GUILD) + Yuki Kageyama (Arts Commons Tokyo)
Translators: Yuki Okumura (ARTISTS’ GUILD) + Art Translators Collective
Design: Kentaro Nakamura
Size: 230 x 270 mm, soft cover, 168 pages
Languages: Japanese, English
Price: 1,800 yen
ISBN: 978-4-907562-05-2
Publisher: torch press
Year: 2016



ARTISTS’ GUILD (AG) is a form of social experiment initiated by artists to explore new possibilities for supporting art. In 2009, AG launched a video equipment sharing system with the aim of reducing the financial burden for individual artists to make artworks and exhibitions. In 2013, AG established AG Productions LLC, an incorporated organization that engages in art praxis with a different approach to that of artists working individually by undertaking video documentation of exhibitions and related events.