tokyo camera style

Oct 03 2014

Selected promotional postcards for photography shows and one shodo exhibition in Tokyo, October, 2014.

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Shimokitazawa
Olympus OM-1 with 50mm f1.8 lens
Photographer: Cueisao / tumblr

Shimokitazawa

Olympus OM-1 with 50mm f1.8 lens

Photographer: Cueisao / tumblr

Oct 02 2014
A stroller full of cats spotted in Omotesando, Tokyo over the weekend.

A stroller full of cats spotted in Omotesando, Tokyo over the weekend.

Oct 01 2014
Uniqlo limited edition Daido Moriyama t-shirt spotted at Nobuyoshi Araki’s opening reception for Kirishin at Rathole Gallery in Aoyama, Tokyo.
via Tokyo Camera Style on Instagram

Uniqlo limited edition Daido Moriyama t-shirt spotted at Nobuyoshi Araki’s opening reception for Kirishin at Rathole Gallery in Aoyama, Tokyo.

via Tokyo Camera Style on Instagram

Sep 29 2014
Ebisu Garden Place
Widelux F7 with Voigtlander ball grip

Ebisu Garden Place

Widelux F7 with Voigtlander ball grip

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Sensouji Temple, Asakusa
Canon F-1 with FD 50mm f3.5 Macro lens and flash adapter.
Since my GRD4 is at Ricoh getting repaired I’ve been using my iPhone for images for this site over the past two weeks. It sure can’t handle contrast very smoothly.  Can’t wait to get the Ricoh back-  I bought it used earlier this year and it went sour thankfully within Kitamura Camera’s six month warranty window. That’s a first. Usually I only get about a year out of a GRD. My “scorecard” of GRD bodies from early 2009 to January 2014 looks like this.  

Sensouji Temple, Asakusa

Canon F-1 with FD 50mm f3.5 Macro lens and flash adapter.

Since my GRD4 is at Ricoh getting repaired I’ve been using my iPhone for images for this site over the past two weeks. It sure can’t handle contrast very smoothly.  Can’t wait to get the Ricoh back-  I bought it used earlier this year and it went sour thankfully within Kitamura Camera’s six month warranty window. That’s a first. Usually I only get about a year out of a GRD. My “scorecard” of GRD bodies from early 2009 to January 2014 looks like this.  

Sep 28 2014

Seen: Araki Nobuyoshi’s Kirishinat Rathole Gallery in Aoyama

Back in 2011 I was asked by Marc Feustel of Eyecurious to provide some Japanese photobooks for an article entitled  Photobooks 2011: a view from Japan in it, I listed two books by Araki which dealt with his physical alteration of negatives and prints used to make the work, Shakyou-ronin Nikki (Wides), and Shamanatsu 2011 (Rathole). 

In May of 2014 Taka Ishii Gallery exhibited a series of new work titled Love On The Left Eye (mini report here) Araki blackened out the right half of each slide film frame with a marker directly as a sort of darkly playful artistic response to going blind in his right eye. Kirishin continues his creative destruction and rebirth-through picture-halves, this time with a pair of scissors and cellophane tape. The technical explanation is easy- Two frames of slide film were held together and then sliced through. Each part of the frame was paired with its opposite and taped together to create two new pictures which were then scanned and enlarged for the exhibition. The press release from Rathole explains:

Kirishin, when written in Japanese as 切真 is composed of the character kiru meaning “to cut” (also used in the Japanese word for “sentimental”- a key theme found in many of Araki’s works-) and the character meaning “the truth” (also used in the Japanese word shashin meaning photography). 

Careful viewers will notice some subtle yet clever formal connections between the image halves but to simply view them as those kinds of exercises would be missing the bigger picture- but Araki’s pictures have never been just about direct content, either. From the press release:

“Photography is just like life,” explains Araki, who gives birth to new discoveries and realities through a unique and unexpected synthesis of images in Kirishin. Not only is the title a clever play on words characteristic of the artist, but the photographs in the exhibition also express Araki’s playful sense of humor and his unrelenting thirst for life.

Kirishin is up at Rathole Gallery from September 26 – November 2, 2014  / 12:00 - 20:00 / Closed Mondays

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Rathole Gallery, Minami Aoyama
Canon EOS Kiss 5

Rathole Gallery, Minami Aoyama

Canon EOS Kiss 5

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Rathole Gallery, Minami Aoyama
Leica C2

Rathole Gallery, Minami Aoyama

Leica C2

Sep 27 2014
Rathole Gallery, Minami Aoyama
Ricoh GR21

Rathole Gallery, Minami Aoyama

Ricoh GR21

Sep 26 2014
At Nobuyoshi Araki’s opening reception for his latest show “Kirishin” at Rathole Gallery in Aoyama, Tokyo.

At Nobuyoshi Araki’s opening reception for his latest show “Kirishin” at Rathole Gallery in Aoyama, Tokyo.

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Robert Frank: Young Japanese often want to go to New York. I couldn’t understand why until I arrived in Tokyo. Rules can be sensed to an amazing extent throughout Tokyo, even when getting in a taxi or going shopping. The young Japanese who go to New York all want to escape from those rules.

Araki:  But those who go there lack discipline. It is precisely in a place where rules and regulations exist that one learns the meaning of freedom. They’re just being self-indulgent because, no matter what kind of rules exist, the important thing is to be able to gain freedom. I developed as a photographer through the deaths of my father, my mother, and my wife. People who indulge themselves in photography or art don’t make good photographers or artists. A photographer must be a solitary person. For example, when someone dies, when a woman is crying, or in a moment of great passion, a photographer must be able to hold the camera and take pictures. As a result, I face the problem of being called inhuman or cold-hearted. That’s the hard part.

Frank:  And the women who are your subjects, Mr. Araki, quickly get wise to your tricks and leave in a hurry…

Araki:  That’s probably why I take a photograph of each woman out of a lingering attachment…because a photograph expresses a desire to make that woman mine. But, the women all leave me. Anyway, the intrinsic nature of photographs is lingering attachment. The desire to preserve something in the form of a photograph is the basic instinct, or physiology of photography. I think that all photographers should begin from the physiology of photography without getting too cerebral about it. And Robert, please do not solely make films and say that you’ve quit photography. Let’s keep taking photographs. With that in mind, I’d like to give you this gift…  (while handing R.Frank a compact camera)


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Excerpt from a conversation between Robert Frank and Nobuyoshi Araki regarding the entries of the Canon New Cosmos of Photography contest, of which Frank was a guest judge for, in Tokyo in 1994.  (source)

(Source: valerian)

Sep 25 2014

With photography, the best thing to do is look straight at the person, place, or situation you are photographing and just press the shutter without thinking about anything. By doing this, the power of the subject comes across, and this is the strength of the photographic genre. I feel that among recent submissions to the competition, perhaps too many have been mentally conceptualized beforehand, or suffered from the overuse of sophisticated camera functions.

Photographers should remind themselves of the basic truth that if the subject is not good, the photograph won’t be any good either. They need to take more of a hands-off approach, and focus on having encounters with things and people. So for this year’s competition, I chose works that gave me the impression that the photographer had done just that.

I didn’t feel that the submissions to this year’s competition were particularly different from those submitted at previous competitions. Even so, it’s a fact that the skill level is so high now that I just assume all the work I look at will demonstrate a high level of skill. This means that it’s pointless to pick winners and losers on the basis of skill alone. In addition, elaborately produced photographs that have been forced to incorporate some kind of drama inevitably turn out to be weak.

Photographs must depict things that are important in the lives of the individuals who take them. Photographs that show you that the photographer got wet, sweated, or was breathing heavily can often move the viewer. It’s good to be honest and straightforward towards both your subject and your own feelings.

-Nobuyoshi Araki

excerpt from his statement at the Grand Prize selection open-committee meeting for the 2007 Canon New Cosmos award.

source

(via valerian)
Sep 24 2014
High School Culture Festival, Chiba
Neoca 35 iiiS 

High School Culture Festival, Chiba

Neoca 35 iiiS 

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Seen:  Shinji Abe’s  新宿 2010, 2013 

Where: 3rd District Gallery, Shinjuku, Tokyo (map)

When: September 21 - October 1, 2014 (open 13:00-20:00)

This is Abe’s third show of the year at 3rd District. He’s been using the venue to go through his archives over the past few years- His May show was titled 2009, 2010 , his July show, reviewed here, was titled 2011, 2012. Hopefully 2015 will see a few exhibitions of work he’s currently making in 2014.

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