Artist Interview



Since the 1990s Biggers has been fascinated by the correspondences between different spiritual and cultural systems. The principles of universality and community he has found in both African-American and Buddhist traditions has been a particular influence on both his film and object-based practice. Made on location in Japan, Hip Hop Ni Sasagu (In Fond Memory of Hip Hop) examines the objects used by individuals to express particular codes of belief. The video documents an improvised bell-ringing ensemble performed by the artist and fifteen others at the Joanin Zen temple in Ibaraki. A number of the ‘singing bells’ used in the video were fabricated from melted-down jewellery associated with hip hop that the artist found in Japan. Biggers has noted that hip hop is both ‘everything and nothing’. This ambivalence may be reflected in his use of a bell choir and Buddhist meditation to memorialise hip hop.