The House Collective Unveils a New Art Film to Celebrate Its Forthcoming Tokyo Property
The award-winning hospitality group presents a boundary-pushing art and culture experience, available to watch now.
Hong Kong, 16 May 2023 – Ahead of its new House in Japan, due to be completed in fiscal year 2027, The House Collective has released a short film that exemplifies and honours the brand’s connection to art and culture. Directed by visual artist Riku Ozama, the film follows a narrative of movement as told by five dance artists across Tokyu Department Store’s flagship store, an iconic location in the heart of Tokyo and the future site of the as-yet unnamed House.
The dance performance and film celebrate The House Collective’s new beginnings in Japan whilst bidding farewell to the legendary department store. The dancers engage and connect through contrasting movements and spaces, telling a story of honoured tradition, modernity, harmony and new possibilities. Beginning in the now-shuttered Tokyu Department Store’s flagship store, the dance flows through the building and on to the streets of Shibuya as the artists engage with the changing environments. As the film concludes, they gather on the Store’s rooftop in a salute to the site's future as the new House.
“We wanted to connect The House Collective brand with our Japanese friends – to truly reflect Japanese culture and our brand culture at the same time. By telling our story through dance, time and space, this film is an extension of what we believe in. It also allowed us to share how the Tokyu Department Store’s flagship store is being given a new life, creating a brand-new experience for the local audience,” says Teresa Muk, Swire Hotels’ Head of Brand and Strategic Marketing.
Bringing together dance artists from different ages, nationalities and dance disciplines, the performance was an extension of The House Collective’s biennial art programme Encounters Across Cultures – a series driven by the brand’s belief that creativity comes best from crossing cultures.
The creative team encompassed longstanding partners of the Houses, who have collaborated on previous art programmes. Executive Producer and Choreographer Patsy Lo hails from Hong Kong, with artistic work recognised by international dance festivals. Graduated from The Royal Ballet School in London, Japanese choreographer Yuh Egami is a Ballet Master at the Hong Kong Ballet. Dancers included Japanese natives Reijiro Tsumura, named “national living treasure” and master of classical Japanese dance-drama Noh, Hana Sakai, a prima ballerina, and Kyoka Yamamoto, a hip-hop world champion from Osaka alongside French contemporary dancer Gildas Lemonnier and Spanish Flamenco dancer Benito García.
The artists each brought their personal histories and stories to the performance, some with fond memories of the department store itself. “I started ballet at the Tachibana Ballet School in Tomigaya,” said prima ballerina Hana Sakai. “My parents would wait for me at the Tokyu Department Store’s flagship store to pick me up and take me home every day. I felt like this was a chance for me to dance in a place where I have a lot of memories, and to say ‘goodbye’ to Tokyu Department Store.”
Along with a live dance performance, the film premiered at an evening hosted by The House Collective in Tokyo on March 29th. Symbolic of rebirth and renewal, Japan's sakura cherry blossoms bloomed as VIP guests, including the brand’s partners from luxury labels and cultural trendsetters, enjoyed The House Collective experience through its Michelin-starred cuisine and tea-inspired cocktails. Chef Tony Xu of The Temple House curated special canapés, which he created to showcase Sichuan cuisine’s 24 traditionally recognised flavours, while House mixologists designed cocktails to pay tribute to the tea culture and cultural heritage of our Houses’ four cities.
“Bringing The House Collective experience to Japan is an exciting moment for all of us,” says Dean Winter, Managing Director of Swire Hotels. “The evening encapsulated the ethos of the group – people-first hospitality and a vibrant guest experience – that we are delighted to be able to share with travellers and locals alike at our new Tokyo House.”
Fusing art and culture, The House Collective film embodies the elements core to its brand DNA as the acclaimed group expands into Japan with its distinctive personality.
The House Collective Website here.
Full dance film here.