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PechaKucha or Pecha Kucha (Japanese: ペチャクチャ, IPA: [petɕa ku͍̥tɕa], chit-chat) is a presentation style in which 20 slides are shown for 20 seconds each (six minutes and 40 seconds in total). The format, which keeps presentations concise and fast-paced, powers multiple-speaker events called PechaKucha Nights (PKNs).
PechaKucha Night was devised in February 2003 by Astrid Klein and Mark Dytham of Tokyo's Klein-Dytham Architecture (KDa), as a way to attract people to SuperDeluxe, their experimental event space in Roppongi, and to allow young designers to meet, show their work, and exchange ideas.
In 2004, a few cities in Europe began holding PKNs, the first of several hundred cities that have since launched similar events around the world. As of June 2012, PechaKucha Nights were held in 534 cities worldwide.
A typical PechaKucha Night includes 8 to 14 presentations. The presenters (and much of the audience) are usually from the design, architecture, photography, art and creative fields, but also from academia. Most presenters are design professionals showing their creative work, but presenters often speak about such topics as their travels, research projects, student projects, hobbies, collections, or other interests.
Organizers in some cities have added their own variations to the format. In Groningen, in the Netherlands, two slots are given to a live band, and the final 20 seconds of each presentation consists of an immediate critique of the presentation by the host’s sidekicks. Video art has also been presented at some events.
Well-known presenters at PechaKucha Nights have included the architects Jun Aoki, Toyo Ito, Rem Koolhaas, designers such as Tom Dixon, Ron Arad, Thomas Heatherwick, artists as Emmanuel_Guillaud but also comedians such as Johnny Vegas, actress Joanna Lumley and ITN newscaster Jon Snow. However, the success of each presentation relies purely on the presenter’s personality and the strength of her or his ideas; the format places young designers and students on the same footing as global stars.
To start a PechaKucha Night, potential organizers contact the PechaKucha organization, and after an informal application process, exchange a "handshake" agreement. There are no limitations to a PechaKucha night. Anyone is invited to partake in the presentation.