2015.10.21 Wednesday

004 Guest artists I wasn’t told about

It was on September 28, 2015 that the Organizing Committee of the Olympic Games held a press conference and revealed the fact that indeed, special requests to participate in the competition had been sent out to eight designers, on September 9, 2014. It was through this press conference that I first learned of the existence of guest artists (guest designers). As a member of the panel of judges, I was flabbergasted by the revelation; how could a key piece of information, something integral to the judging process, have been kept from us?

Three days after the press conference of September 28, a weekly magazine came out on October 1, with a detailed report—covering far specific grounds compared to what was released by the Organizing Committee. The article shed light on new evidence that only members of the Organizing Committee and select individuals on the judging panel (Mr. Kazumasa Nagai and Mr. Takuma Takasaki, who sent out the letters of invitation to the guest artists) could have known. 

I looked up past cases and found precedents. I learned about competitions that were held with invitation-only guest artists. I could see that the practice of inviting guest artists is a valid process. Then why conceal the fact and not make it public?

I am not taking issue with the practice of guest artists itself. I feel that the biggest problem at hand is: some judges on the panel, in addition to the Organizing Committee, were privy to the existence of guest artists, while the fact was not disclosed to other judges, including me. Similarly, when we look at the entrants to the competition, 96 entrants, not counting the eight guest artists, were unaware of the group of invitees. They were not told. That creates a problem. We are saying inviting guest artists is a legitimate practice, so it was just a matter of disclosing the information beforehand. By keeping things under the wraps the Organizing Committee created the current situation, open to suspicion. I feel that the Organizing Committee brought the unfortunate situation on itself.

Let me digress a little from the main topic. In the report released by the Organizing Committee on September 28, 2015, there was no mention of the fact that except for a select few judges, the panel of judges were kept in the dark about the guest artists. There was no explanation as to who made the guest artist selections. Furthermore, there was nothing about how the information was never disclosed to entrants other than the guest artists. None of the self-evident, crucial information was included in the report. I was one of the parties concerned, yet even I couldn’t follow the report’s logic. It was not only this report that caused a sense of unease in me. Even before this, I was hit by a similar feeling, at the press conferences held on August 28 and September 1. The disillusionment was one of the reasons that prompted me to start this blog.

At the meeting with the Organization Committee official, which was held on September 3, 2014, while listening to the screening guidelines, I vaguely remember something was mentioned about guest artists—but nothing more. There was no explanation as to guest artists per se; no mention of numbers, no names, nothing specific. Nothing was ever said about guest artists, ever since, including the day we gathered to make the selection for the competition. I heard nothing.

If we are to maintain that the judging was conducted in a fair and equitable manner, we must be able to say that all the judges on the panel and all competition entrants were on the same page, sharing the same information regarding the screening process. Yet in reality, there were two groups among the judges; one that knew about guest artists, and another that did not. There were two groups among the entrants; one that was well aware of guest artists and another that was not. Now that these facts have come to light it can surely be said that the premise of fairness has been shattered. 

After I became aware of the existence of guest artists through the press conference held on September 28, I could finally make the connection. The realization triggered a certain memory—an incident that took place during the judging. It happened on the second day of the judging. Things were warming up. Judges were trying to keep their focus on the submissions. The atmosphere in the room was getting intense. That is when I heard an Organizing Committee official utter some words that sounded like, “Shouldn’t we keep this? It’s a submission from one of the guest artists.” At that time, I was not aware that there were any guest artists. And the official’s words weren’t meant for my ears. I did not pursue the matter further. But now, the memory has come back. I remember the mysterious words. And I have made the connection. I finally understood the meaning behind those words. All submissions made by guest artists had to proceed to a certain stage, regardless of what points they earned. Could that have been one of the rules agreed upon—by the inner set?
 
Keiko Hirano
 
Keiko Hirano:
Designer/Visioner, Executive Director of Communication Design Laboratory
Hirano served on the panel that chose the official emblem for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics, which was ultimately withdrawn.

五輪エンブレム問題の
事実と考察
001 責任がとれる方法で 002 公募期間の短さ 003 『展開』『展開性』『展開力』 004 知らされなかった招待作家 005 ブログを読んで下さっているみなさまへ 006 利害優先の土壌 007 修正案承諾拒否の経緯と理由 - vol.1 008 修正案承諾拒否の経緯と理由 - vol.2 009 『公』の仕事 010 専門家の盾 011 秘密保持誓約書という密室 012 いまこそ、私心なき専門性を問う 013 判断の論拠 014 最終の審議 015 金銭感覚と敬意の相対性 016 表現におけるモラリティと表現者のモラル 017 言葉のちから 018 何のための調査なのか、調査の目的は何なのか - vol.1 019 何のための調査なのか、調査の目的は何なのか - vol.2 020 何のための調査なのか、調査の目的は何なのか - vol.3 021 何のための調査なのか、調査の目的は何なのか - vol.4 022 願い 023 摩訶不思議な調査報告書 024 負の遺産とならないように 025 出口なき迷路 026 届かぬ思い 027「社会に位置づくデザイン」という観点 028 無責任主義の村 029 審査委員として知り得た情報のすべて 030 新聞寄稿文への異論 - vol.1 031 新聞寄稿文への異論 - vol.2 032 1対3の構図 - 「A案」VS「BCD案」 033 今を生きる 034 負の連鎖……を断つために 035 欲望の公害 精神の断絶 036 イカサマ文書 by JAGDA - vol.1 037 イカサマ文書 by JAGDA - vol.2 038 イカサマ文書 by JAGDA - vol.3 039 事実はひとつ 040 新世界へ 041 JAGDA文書への意見と要望 ― 法律の専門家による分析 042 JAGDAの回答 JAGDAへの要望書 043 「要望書へのJAGDAの回答」に対する更なる質問 044 「意見書へのJAGDAの回答」に対する質問と提案 045 ブラック・デザイン 046 弁護士から届いた封書 047 おとぎの国の物語 048 退会届
Tokyo 2020 Olympics Logo Controversy--Facts and Observations 001 My way of taking responsibility 002 Duration of contest was way short 003 “Development” “Development Capabilities” “Development Power” 004 Guest artists I wasn’t told about 005 To My Readers 006 A culture where special interests take priority 007 How and why I refused to accept the modified design - vol.1 008 How and why I refused to accept the modified design - vol.2 009 Strictly “public” work 010 Specialists as shields 011 Behind closed doors-secrecy surrounding a non-disclosure agreement 012 Time to put selfless expertise to the test 013 Rationale behind my decision 014 The final review session 015 Is the money mindset relative to paying respect? 016 Morality of expression and the morals of its creator 017 The power of words 018 An investigation for what? What is the purpose of the investigation - vol.1 019 An investigation for what? What is the purpose of the investigation - vol.2 020 An investigation for what? What is the purpose of the investigation - vol.3 021 An investigation for what? What is the purpose of the investigation - vol.4 022 My wish 023 Mystifying investigation report is out 024 In order to prevent a negative legacy 025 Stuck in a maze with no exit 026 A voice unheard 027 A viewpoint that calls for “design with a place in society” 028 A village with a policy of irresponsibility 029 Every piece of information that I garnered as a judge on the selection committee 030 Objections to a newspaper contribution - vol.1 031 Objections to a newspaper contribution - vol.2 032 The underlying picture of one against three - “Plan A” versus “Plans BCD” 033 Living in the moment 034 Putting a stop……to a negative chain of events 035 Pollution by greed and discontinuity of the spirit 036 Bogus document by JAGDA - vol.1 037 Bogus document by JAGDA - vol.2 038 Bogus document by JAGDA - vol.3 039 Every fact has only one version 040 Toward a whole new world 041 Opinion and request regarding JAGDA document―An analysis by a legal specialist 042 Reply from JAGDA Request letter to JAGDA 043 More questions re: "Reply from JAGDA regarding Request Letter" 044 Questions and proposal re: "Reply from JAGDA regarding Request Letter" 045 Rogue design 046 Letter from the lawyers 047 Tales from Wonderland 048 Withdrawal Notice