Sapporo Boogie Woogie is a tribute to the work of Piet Mondrian, whose famous Broadway Boogie Woogie remains aesthetically interesting some 70 years after its creation.
The piece literally transposes Sapporo city’s actual grid layout, as opposed to Mondrian’s abstracted New York city form in Broadway. Sapporo also extend’s Mondrian’s efforts to capture the beat of a city by adding pulsing movements into the piece, allowing the viewer to feel the tempo.
The colour palette of the piece switches in the evenings – as night descends upon the city – to reflect the dynamism of Sapporo as a city, but also of its climate, which dramatically transforms the Hokkaido landscape between winter and summer.
Sapporo Boogie Woogie was originally written in Processing. It was rewritten and ported to the web using p5.js.
Sapporo was created after spending a few days walking around the Hokkaido capital. So regulated are the traffic stops – and people’s adherence to them – that it feels like the city is almost beating as its arterial roads pulse one way and then another.
It’s also an incredibly rectangular place – the city-issued map resembles a series of lines connected on grid paper.