Art Project

The Nights of Chiyoda

Ting-Ting Cheng

<Tokyo Biennale 2020 SOCIAL DIVE Artist-in-Residence Projects>

Chiyoda City, as the least populated ward in Tokyo, has the biggest gap between its day and night populations. “The Nights of Chiyoda” includes audio guided walks in Chiyoda, which examine the history and culture of Japan. The walks are made to challenge the collectivism and the restricted concept of nation and ethnicity through discovering the unnoticed night scene of the district. The potential spots for the walks include Yasukuni Shrine, Chongryon* communities, and Kasumigaseki Station. Audiences are invited to download the audio guides through their phones, and start the walks at designated points. In the audio guides, the spirits of people from the past, such as a Taiwanese Japanese soldier who died in WWII, the Zainichi born as a foreigner, and the ghost of a commuter who continuously commutes since 1995, will tell you their stories while giving instructions for the walk. The ghosts, the spirits, the history, the forgotten past, will all come out at night. “The Nights of Chiyoda” is where the abandoned stories are retold and visitors and residents walk into the past together. It reminds us that Chiyoda is not just an area that we cannot afford to live in, an area made for tourists, bankers, or royal family, it is the home of soldiers, immigrants, commuters, lovers, families, colonizers and the colonized.

*General Association of Korean Residents in Japan

National Culture and Arts Foundation, Taiwan

(As of February 2021)

1: “2 March 1981” documentation of audience participation, 2018, Fordham Park (London, UK), Photo by Ting-Ting Cheng
2: “The Nights of Chiyoda” image sketch of streets around Yasukuni Shrine (Tokyo, Japan), 2020, Drawing by Fabio Sayegh
3: “The Nights of Chiyoda” image sketch of streets around the HQ of Chongryon (Tokyo, Japan), 2020, Drawing by Fabio Sayegh


Ting-Ting Cheng (Artist)

Ting-Ting Cheng is based in Taipei and London. She graduated with an MA in Photographic Studies at University of Westminster and MFA Fine Art at Goldsmiths College. In her practice, she examines our cultural, national and racial identities through reinterpreting archival materials to construct narratives in the current context. Cheng had solo shows at Taipei Fine Art Museum, Galerie Grand Siècle (Taipei), Identity Gallery (Hong Kong), Gallery Nomart (Osaka, Japan), Luis Adelantado (Valencia, Spain), Iniva (London) and more. She participated in Bi-City Biennale of Urbanism/Architechture (Shenzhen, China), III Moscow International Biennale for Young Art, Contemporary Art Festival Sesc_Videobrasil (São Paulo) and group exhibitions at KuanDu Museum (Taipei), National Taiwan Museum of Fine Art (Taichung), National Art Museum of China (Beijing) among others. She was an artist-in-residence at Addaya Art Centre (Palma, Spain), GlogauAIR (Berlin), Ben-Uri Museum, Iniva (London), CFCCA (Manchester), cheLA (Buenos Aires), Zero Station (Ho Chi Minh City), Museum of Modern and Contemporary Arts (Seoul), Taitung Art Museum (Taitung) and more.

Photo by Ting-Ting Cheng

Art Project