top of page
Excerpt from the Vipers



"I want my jewelry to be aggressive - not pretty, not charming, but powerful (..) I want my jewelry to be objects in their own right, independent of their decorative function."- Ferdi, 1955


In 1955 Tajiri made his first film, The Vipers, on a 16 mm Kodak. He wanted to do a short semi-documentary on cannabis and hashish, which in 1955 were still relatively unknown to the public at large. Tajiri wanted to show the ritual of rolling a joint and lighting up, then juxtaposing a series of seemingly unrelated visuals to create a feeling of the high. When it was finished he took it to Cannes, France for the festival of 16 mm films and received the Golden Lion for 'Best Use of the Language of Film'.

A few months later he made a 10-minute documentary on Ferdi and her iron welded jewelry. This atmospheric documentary shows Ferdi welding and fashioning her jewelery. The images of the insect-like jewels fade into footage of real insects. The film was later shown on Dutch television.


text: S. Tajiri, Autobiographical notations, Kempen Publishers, 1993

photo above: Excerpt from Ferdi  film, 1955 by Shinkichi Tajiri

New music composed by Martijn Alsters (windcontroller) and Willem Tanke (hauptwerk organ). Sounddesign, recording and mastering by Martijn Alsters.

© 2019 Martijn Alsters/Willem Tanke

Distributor: EYE Museum Amsterdam

- EYE Experimental
Ph: +31 20 589 1446

bottom of page