Atsuhiro Ito, a visual artist, began exploring sound in 1998 and has carved out a light/sound performance niche using a fluorescent light tube as an instrument. He ran Tokyo’s now-defunct venue Off Site – home to the Onkyo movement – until 2005 and set up his own label, Gotobai recordings, in 2009.
Ito (1965) started out in the 80s as a visual artist and regularly exhibits his work in Japan and abroad. Ito originally used fluorescent lighting in installation works before reinventing its application in the context of performance, which is noticeably informed by his contemporary art perspective. His light tube instrument, dubbed the Optron, is a noise machine that works with variable voltage, integrated guitar pick-ups, and guitar amps.
In addition to solo exhibitions and Optron outings, Ito is involved in musical projects including the Imai Kazuo Trio, the Intonarumori Orchestra, and Optrum, an extreme noise duo with drummer Yoichiro Shin. The Optrum album Recorded was released in June 2006 on the label Unknownmix.