Shedding a total of 2 to 3 milliliters of tears and storing them in Eppendorf reaction tubes, electronic artist (and one-half of the art duo NONOTAK), Takami Nakamoto did a whole lot of crying for his new music video “Where Is Mawt.” He applied small tear droplets (1 to 5mm in size) onto several microscopic slides, and with collaborator, Maurice Mikkers, recorded the crystallization of the tears over 50 times with a Canon 5D camera.
“The tears could only be used for a small period of time (two hours maximum), so it was necessary for Takami to ‘produce’ more tears once the reaction tube was empty or when we exceeded the time period of two hours,” Mikkers tells The Creators Project. “While I was focusing on recording the crystallization process under the microscope, Takami used the feed to directly edit the recordings to the music. The first draft quickly showed us the direction this collaboration would take.”
As beautiful as the video is, this first collaboration between Nakamoto and Mikkers grew out of tragedy. This spring, Nakamoto’s friend, Mathieu Trudel, simply disappeared without telling anyone. Three weeks later, Nakamoto sent an email to Mikkers proposing a collaboration that would address this looming tragedy. Nakamoto, who had recently seen Mikkers’ Imaginarium of Tears at REUSE Festival in Kuwait, and briefly met him while presenting his own work, wanted to do something similar with his own tears, then build the music over top this process. Mikkers instantly accepted the invitation.
A few days later, Trudel’s body was found at Petrie Island. Their worst fears confirmed, Nakamoto and Mikkers decided to meet the following day in The Hague, Netherlands. It was there that the filming and music production process took place.
“The combination of our visions, ideas and passion could result in something I had wanted to do for a long time: combine the clips created from the crystallization of tears with a uniquely composed musical piece,” says Mikkers. “In this case, it would even become more than that. By combining and capturing these emotions and feelings using different media there was also the strong possibility that they would intensify one-another. ”
“The emotions of a tragic event like this should not be forgotten,” Mikkers adds. “By working together on a music video collaboration, we can turn the tears and memories of Takami’s into something Mathieu could be remembered by for eternity.”