The Michael Hoppen Gallery is honoured to host its second major exhibition of work by the highly esteemed Japanese photographer Miyako Ishuichi.
Displayed across three floors, the show will include photographs from her early trilogy 'Yokosuka Story'(1976-1977), 'Apartment' (1977-1978), and 'Endless Night'(1981); then prints from 'ひろしま/Hiroshima'; and works from her most recent series 'Silken Dreams', exhibited now for the very first time outside Japan. Ishiuchi was born in 1947 in Japan, a country marked by the influence of US servicemen living on naval bases in major ports and cities during the military occupation post World War II. The presence of western soldiers had a profound effect on Ishiuchi's childhood inspiring her first work, 'Yokosuka Story'. Alongside Shomei Tomatsu, who taught her to print, and Daido Moriyama, Ishiuchi is one of a renowned group of Japanese photographers who confronted the trauma in post-war Japan and the dawning of a new era, by using their cameras as eloquent tools to express, record and explore what it meant to be Japanese at this pivotal moment in history.
Most of her pictures in Yokosuka Story, Apartment and Endless Night are unpopulated. Ishiuchi traces the absent presences and looks for what was and what remains.
It is the driving force behind her series Mothers (representing Japan at the 2005 Venice Biennale) and her ongoing interest in scars. She said: “I cannot stop [taking photographs of scars] because they are so much like a photograph… They are visible events, recorded in the past. Both the scars and the photographs are the manifestation of sorrow for the many things which cannot be retrieved and for love of life as a remembered present.”
In 2007, Ishiuchi photographed articles of clothing worn by victims of the Hiroshima bombing, archived at the Hiroshima Peace Museum Memorial. In 2010, Ishiuchi, took “silk” as a theme and began photographing meisen silk weave fabric and mills, silkworm cocoons. Ishiuchi’s birth city of Kiryu, Gunma Prefecture, once a famous textile production region, now experiences an ever decreasing demand.
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Artists / Speakers: Miyako Ishiuchi.
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