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Matsudo – A city of inspiration

Matsudo International Science Art Festival 2021: How a Japanese city and its creative community cultivate the future.

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Just across the Edo River from Tokyo, Matsudo is a Japanese city where the local creative community and the city government work together to cultivate a future society in which tradition and creative innovation flourish in harmony with nature. It aims to place art and culture at the heart of its development, cultivating a city of creative inspiration.

Future is not just the result of the most advanced technologies. Future arises from the community and human connections. In 2021, the Matsudo International Science Art Festival set out to expand the city’s creative ecosystem and connect with other citizen-led innovations from around the world. From October 16-17, the festival offered artists, scientists, researchers, and local citizens a platform of inspiration and active participation in shaping the future. With its diverse programs, the festival posed an important question to the citizens: How can we cultivate a sustainable urban society?

“In the harmony of a community between people and with nature lies a creative force that fosters culture and generates innovation.”

Yoko Shimizu, Ars Electronica Futurelab

When people with different values gather together as a community, their interests can attract each other and they can create their own ideal lifes. Under the theme “OPEN CITY” the Matsudo International Science Art Festival” contributed for the fourth time this year to creating an inspirational future – by closely liking science, art and nature. Matsudo presented itself as a city open to all, beyond open studios, open campuses, and open labs. During the festival, the city was filled with creative catalysts – people, shops, and events with “catalyst” badges and signs, welcoming visitors to connect and inspire each other. Numerous exhibitions and workshops were curated in close collaboration with Ars Electronica.