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Jomon

A movie for Hatis Noit

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The music video “Jomon'' weaves a tale of a profound ritual where different living beings come to life, led by the guiding hand of a shamanic Hatis Noit. Together with NAOWAO’s character design, CG animation, and ethereal sequences, “Jomon'' emerges as a myth, where the spiritual and natural worlds converge in a captivating celebration of life and death.

1. Concept

1.Concept

During the pandemic, Hatis Noit rediscovered her sense of being truly alive through the creation of Jomon. In this ritualistic process, she rediscovered her profound connection to nature, people, and creatures, reflecting on the powerful bond between life and death linked back to the hunter-gatherer era. In crafting the video, our aim was to capture and convey the powerful emotion of truly being alive, celebrating our deep connection with all spirits and living beings. 
 

Navigating the  theme of celebration of life, both in reality and the spiritual realm, presented a unique challenge for this video. I aimed to steer clear of abstract visuals and instead, immerse viewers in a tangible narrative story experience. A mythical story of a ritual performed by diverse tribes, leading to a ceremony connecting to a larger, unified ceremony through Hatis Noit's voice.

2.Ritual

In the rich tapestry of human history, song and dance have played essential roles in numerous ceremonies and rituals, seamlessly weaving together the tangible realm of the physical and the spiritual. They seamlessly intertwine the tangible world with the intangible spirit, acting as meaningful conduits to honor our roots and forge connections beyond the material realm, with a profound embrace of nature's influence.

Hatis Noit derives her name from the symbolism of the lotus flower's stem. The lotus roots symbolize the connection between the real and the spiritual realm, seamlessly blending tangible and spiritual aspects within the Jomon world.

3.Swirl

I delved into the intricacies of Jomon pottery design, exploring the profound symbolism woven into these artifacts. The swirling motifs, reminiscent of water, fire, and wind, stand as the hallmark of Jomon craftsmanship. The spirit and potency embedded in these patterns are undeniably intertwined with their intimate connection to nature.

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Beyond their elemental symbolism, these swirls are said to evoke shapes resembling snakes and frogs, symbolizing fertility and regeneration, adding another layer of significance to the Jomon legacy. Such intricate designs mirror a deep understanding and reverence for the natural world, underscoring the profound relationship between the artisans and their environment.

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Interestingly, analogous swirl patterns grace the cultural tapestries of other societies. From the magnetic fields of the solar corona, ancestral spirit worship, and the symbolism surrounding totems, golden circles, yin and yang, Polynesian tattoo patterns, and dragon motifs, to the rich imagery depicted by the Warlpiri people of the Aboriginal Walmatjarri tribe, these motifs transcend boundaries, weaving a global narrative of interconnected cultural expressions.

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Interestingly, analogous swirl patterns grace the cultural tapestries of other societies. From the magnetic fields of the solar corona, ancestral spirit worship, and the symbolism surrounding totems, golden circles, yin and yang, Polynesian tattoo patterns, and dragon motifs, to the rich imagery depicted by the Warlpiri people of the Aboriginal Walmatjarri tribe, these motifs transcend boundaries, weaving a global narrative of interconnected cultural expressions.

4.Creatures

The avatar of Hatis Noit in the video represents youthful energy and a pure connection with nature, with her hair and attire infused with elements from the Jomon period. The patterns, echoing those found in Jomon pottery, draw inspiration from natural elements like water, wind, and air, reflecting the lush landscapes and ritual artifacts seen throughout the film. The execution of the garment was created in collaboration with SGI Creator and Maaike Van Den Abbeele. The antennas on Hatis Noit’s forehead connect her to an otherworldly existence, mirroring the creatures seen in other scenes, coiling and swirling to create similar organic shapes.

The film introduces four distinct creature tribes inspired by nudibranchs, amphibians, reptiles, and insects. Each of these tribes embodies the symbolism of reproduction, fertility, and the cycle of life. The Sea Chromo tribe, reminiscent of vibrant sea slugs, symbolizes the celebration of life for all living beings. Their non-gendered reproductive system and adaptability showcase the diversity of life. The Frogolotls tribe, a fusion of axolotls and frogs, embodies metamorphosis and reproduction, beautifully captured in their ceremonial dance that resonates with the cycle of life and death. A choreographer and performer, Sung Im Her, created a choreography that connected the spirits of the creatures and the music. We animated he Frogolotls to match the videos taken from Sung Im’s movements, and their ceremony came to life. The Snake Dragon tribe transforms from snakes into majestic dragons, symbolizing metamorphosis, transformation, and the life cycle. Finally, the Teno, a magical praying mantis, pays homage to a special moment of inspiration from a mantis dancing on Hatis Noit’s arm while she sang in Portuguese.

“Jomon” blurs the boundaries between the living and spirit worlds, guided by Hatis Noit’s enchanting voice and the mesmerizing singing and dancing of the creatures. The film builds up to a climactic final scene, creating a thread that connects two worlds reminiscent of the lotus thread, signifying the universal connection between all spirits. This video's visual style embodies a realm of stylized fantasy, immersing the audience in a mystical, otherworldly experience that taps into our shared human spirit. Ritual, dance, and singing serve as the cornerstone of the story, forging a magnetic force that resonates with people from all walks of life, uniting us in a celebration of all life. “Jomon” is not just a music video; it’s a magnetic force that can relate to different people and energy that runs through us but feels the same thing that unites us all—a celebration of all life.

Team

Direction + Concept: NAOWAO

3D Character + Environment Design: NAOWAO
Lead 3D Modeler: NAOWAO
3D Character Modeler: Javier de Jesús Cárdenas Hernandez / Talha Khan
3D Garment Modeler by SGI Creator
Garment support: Maaike Van Den Abbeele

Lead 3D Animator: NAOWAO
3D Animator: Seres Animation Studio
Rigging: Seres Animation Studio / amna_3d

Creature choreographer: Sung-im Her

Executive Producer: Robert Raths

Hatis Noit

The Sea Chromo Tribe

The Frogolotls Tribe

The Teno Tribe

The Sea Dragon Tribe

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