I Wrote it in Tokyo in 1954
I Wrote it in Tokyo in 1954 is based on Paik’s composition produced during his freshman year in college. The piece consists of 144 notes that comprise a single movement. Paik incorporated the movement into his 1994 work, and the piece was played by an antique musical instrument made in the 18th century. The composition was then displayed on an old TV set from the 1950s. The hypnotic image on the screen showed a revolving music box. The image, however, is not an actual mechanical device but an image captured and projected in real-time by a camera installed inside the TV set. Paik combined the image of modern electronics and the tradition of old but familiar TVs and music boxes to create a mixture of surrealism, poetry, and a little exaggeration. The past, the present, and even the future that Paik intended to show through his work all appear on the same screen.
Nam June Paik
wooden TV cabinet, 1 CRT TV set, 1 CCTV camera, incandescent light bulb, Reuge music box