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  • My Artist Residency Experience At Villa Kujoyama

    [02.27.20]
    - Christophe Galati

  • IV) Personal Growth

    The goal of Villa Kujoyama is to become a privileged moment in the life of an artist, like a spiritual journey to reinvent themself. I have the feeling that it happen in the perfect time for me, even if I was only 24. I was just out of 4 years of intense production of Save me Mr Tako, who kind of burned me out as I had to deal with it and a daily job, and I didn't really take care of myself during that time.

    Thus, one of my side goals was to get in a better shape. Without the financial pressure, I was able to take time to live correctly, set up a routine with a fitness session every morning. Following the same video everyday, the fact that I live on a mountain, cooking Japanese food, all those elements formed a healthier lifestyle, which allowed me to lose a lot of weight during my residency.

    
    
    Pictures from Villa Kujoyama, January/May 2019

    I was able to take Japanese lessons again, I started when I was in high school but had to stop when I left to study game design & programming. Since January I had 2 lessons a week at the Villa Kujoyama, and an other lessons in a school when my initial teacher was away. In addition to those courses, I wrote one page of Kanji each days. I felt a great progression in my Japanese level, which will hopefully be useful moving forward in my career, and allow me to appreciate Japanese culture even more.

     

    All this time in this monastery on the mountain allowed me to take a step back and think about my life, focus on what I want to create and achieve, far from my life and its issues. Learning about all the other artists experiences, meeting a lot of new people, being inspired, live a romance... I learned a lot, became more eloquent and confident in myself. As if I had a speeded up complete life in a bubble during 5 months, with different eras, different seasons, I feel like I grew up. In a way, I needed that, and will now be able to give myself 100% in my projects, try the new paths I thought about to stay indie and continue to create to share my messages.

    V) Entering Kyoto Indie Scene

    Last and not least, while doing this residency I wanted to meet with the Japanese indie scene, that I started to experienced when I went to game events in Japan to showcase Save me Mr Tako. I wanted to become part of it, talk about Villa Kujoyama, try to inspired the other with my story. Here are a few events where I was able to show my work.

    • Osaka Indie Meetup IchiPixel : 

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pUt9bzMQzN8

    Picture from IchiPixel, January 25 2019
    • Kyoto Indie Meetup

    Picture from Game Attack Info, February 16 2019
    • Open Studios Villa Kujoyama (March 16)

    • I gave a talk in a class at Tokyo Polytechnic University (April 19), to inspire the students.

    • I also gave class and made food for the students at ic cube in Kyoto Seika University (April 24/ May 22)

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