Todo Onada

I still only have a limited amount of information regarding Todo Onada. I am one of the few people who have any kind of social contact with him, and he tells me very little, even less of which is printable. Todo’s rugs are playful, and there is something friendly about them. They are made from 60-knot wool and are very hard-wearing and ideal for smaller spaces.

Todo flies beneath the radar of the Japanese art world, inhabiting a strange space somewhere between computer game design and social action, rarely finding the time to stop his meticulous work and partake in shows. He is lucky in this regard, as the few people who manage to get a chance to buy his work value this exclusivity and he is able to continue his mission, to counteract the negative impression we are often given about new technology. His central point is that “we have truly become cyborgs as we have built machines into our lives, to the degree that we are part machine/computer, part flesh/magic”.

The two pieces above were submitted as image files, one showing a landscape and the other a smiling child’s face. I had no idea what to do with this format (or desire to make the rugs), until an accompanying file arrived which seemed to be the same files in reverse order, accompanied by the instruction to overlay the first two files with the second. Confused, I did so and the resulting images were the designs above - ‘Peace Invasion’ and ‘Ghosts in the Machine, 1980’. Unbelievable!