Shoji Kawamori Expo (河森正治EXPO Kawamori Shōji Ekisupo) is a commemorative exhibit dedicated to Shōji Kawamori, held from May 31 to June 23, 2019 at the Tokyo Dome City Gallery. The exhibit celebrates the 40th anniversary of his professional debut, from Gunhed to Aquarion, and everything in between.
Shōji Kawamori, the "vision creator" who worked on the original Super Dimension Fortress Macross television series, its spinoffs, Aquarion, Eureka Seven, Last Hope (Unit Pandora) and many others, celebrated his 40th anniversary since his professional debut with the retrospective exhibition Shoji Kawamori Expo held from May 31 to June 23, 2019 at the Tokyo Dome City Gallery AaMo (Gallery Armo). The event not only had mecha and character figures from his respective works over the decades, but hundreds of design drawings, storyboards and idea notes and even new visuals developed specifically for the dome-shaped screens in the venue.
The general admission ticket preorder sale price was 1,800 yen and 2,000 yen when purchased at the venue itself. The admission ticket for the K-40 theater cost 2,200 Yen to preorder and 2,400 Yen when bought there.
The main pavilion featured giant statues of giant mechanical units from Macross, Aquarion EVOL and Eureka Seven. Character figures of Sheryl Nome and Ranka Lee were also on a special table display that recreated the stage from "Universal Bunny". Several VF-1 Valkyrie's mid-transformation were also on display. Exhibition. Kawamori remarked, "We were particular about things like the movement of the wing-flap."
At the center of the main pavilion, is the Aquarion performing its special move, the infinite fist (Mugen Panchi) made from combining several old plastic model boxes. Kawamori wanted something unique for the exhibition. When asked how long it took to make, Kawamori laughed and said, "When I was working on the materials, I thought of using a large number of plastic models," He was adamant to have the exhibit include this "infinite fist".
Also on display are photo spots for visitors where they can take a photo in a panel that imitates the "Itano Circus", which is a technique pioneered by Ichirō Itano where missiles fly around dynamically. A number of vehicles from Kamowari's Cyber Formula were also on dispay in a mini-racing circuit. A tower of Macross also mimicked the Tower of Babel.
Several other areas displayed Kawamori's older work on Cowboy Bebop, Gundam 0083, Devil May Cry 5 (he worked on the game's weapons), and lesser known TV work and Studio Nue materials. The exhibit had an "Inspiration Pavilion" which recreated Kawamori's work area and things from his childhood that would later inspire his work.
"I used to play with harmless rocket firework on the beach with my friends a lot back in the day. The firework's movement at that time was a great source of inspiration for Macross. I saw it in the scene first drawn by Ichirō Itano (back when he worked on the original Mobile Suit Gundam), and met him when working on Crusher Joe. We shared the same history when I told him how I was so excited playing with rocket fireworks when I invited him to work on Macross (laughs)."
"I proudly displayed an old collaborative manga I created with Fujihiko Hosono (who would later become a cartoonist) and Haruhiko Mikimoto, the character design of the first Macross." "The variable powered suit that appeared in it is the original Valkyrie, which I'm somewhat proud (laughs), but because I made the joint manga in 1978, I was making manga which had powered suits fight one another before Gundam! So, if I was born a few years later, I could have done something (laughs)."
The "Future Pavilion" includes projects Kawamori is currently on, as well as the special movie he made for the dome theater. It has been dubbed "the area where you can create the future with all the fans".
Kawamori stated, "I wanted to do it (a film for the dome theater) for about thirty years now. If it was a two-dimensional screen, it would be limited by the screen size, and it will merely become" a feeling of looking objectively... If it is projected in a dome, you can not see the whole thing at one time. Content that brings together and empowers one another... I hope you'll see it many times and make new discoveries,". "We will continue to try to make things more realistic, such as more dome images and even VR on a more realistic scale," he concluded.
- Period: May 31 (Friday) to June 23, 2019 (Sunday)
- Opening time: 10:00 to 20:00 (final entry 19:30)
- Monday until 19:00 (final entry 18:30)
- May 31, 2019 (Fri) is open at 13:00
- Venue: Tokyo Dome City Gallery AaMo (Gallery Armo)
- Organizer: Satelight
- Special Sponsor: SANKYO Co., Ltd.
- Sponsors: Netei News Japan / Bandai Namco Arts Co., Ltd. / MBS
- Supported by: TOKYO MX