Wednesday, December 10, 2008


Everything I photograph instantly becomes a memory. But does the photograph depict exactly what I think I saw or experienced? Wright Morris in his book Time Pieces describes, "The mind is its own place, the visible world is another, and visual and verbal images sustain the dialogue between them." This sentece makes me somehow comfortable. I might be able to depict what exactly I experienced but I could still support that by describing what I experience in words. 

Some memory could be a very important hint to figure out what you are now in a psychotherapeutic way. I use photography to archive my elusive memories. Morris also says, "The effort to check what is slipping., to hold what is escaping, is the response of a more experienced observer than the young man who took the first pictures." That is very interesting that I have been photographing since 1989. Yet, I have just started to explore this realm.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

     I don't even remember when I publish one of my photographs with an intention to talk about my childhood memory. The blogging itself was somewhat overwhelming to me even though this is the way now. Well, I am ready to talk about my childhood and start to articulate what lies beneath the surface of my photographs.  "Ready..... start!!!"
     I always have to talk about this photograph of a man on the stilts. When I photographed this scene, something deep inside me triggered my childhood memory. When I was 10 or eleven, I was obsessed with old European black&white cinemas, which was broadcasted late at night in Nagoya, Japan, where I grew up. Many of the movies showed traveling circuses and gypsy bands. The scenes fascinated me so much, I recall that I thought, as a little kid, that they would take me into the movies with them. I even felt insecure but exciting at the same time. It was a kind of belonging which I was feeling intuitively. 
     I felt the same belongingness when I took the photograph. He belonged to the Marchfourth Marching Band, parading on N. Mississippi Avenue on Mardi Gras. I followed them like a kid who follows a gypsy band. 
     Since then, my focus on photography made a major turn toward a more personal and autobiographical direction. Getting married and having two boys gives me more profound experience as a human being: it also gets your life more complex and busier. Reaching the middle age and the current global economic crisis , in addition, almost forces me think about the concept of time. "What is this feeling of rush?" and I response to myself, "Slow down."
     Urich Wilmers in his essay "Remembering Tomorrow" describes, "The phenonmena of time and space are fundamental conditions of our being in the world. We experience our existence in an awareness of its finiteness. We can neither speed them up nor slow them down." However, photography, film and video allow us to argue that the past could be alterable. Since Muybridge's photographic research on a horse's movement, Many artists express their interest in the concept of time and space such as Andy Warhol's Empire (1964), Douglas Gordon's 24 Hour Psycho (1993), Bill Viola's The Greeting (1995) and Hiroshi Sugimoto.