As digitalisation has led to far-reaching changes in almost every aspect of everyday life, it has certainly changed photography, especially since artistic photography is constantly changing, regardless of whether one is using analogue or digital technology, in the search for new expressive possibilities and presentation forms. The fixation of the bare moment is increasingly becoming only a partial aspect of the medium. This also requires new viewing habits, visions and definitions of the relationship between reality and authenticity in the perception of the viewer.
In “Explorations”, Micheko Gallery presents recent works by five artists: Albarrán Cabrera, a Spanish artist duo and Japanese artists Yuki Tawada, Junji Yamada and Takahiro Yamamoto. It is common to all the works that photography is at the base of their works. In their individuality however, they are subject to various forms of processing and interpretation by the individual artists, right up to photographic realism.
The photographers Anna Cabrera and Angel Albarrán, both born in 1969 and based in Barcelona, have been working since 1996 as an artist duo. Their works have already been shown in exhibitions at home and abroad. As a wall installation, our exhibition “Explorations” presents small-format photographic works from the series “The Mouth of Krishna” and “Kairos“. In the same series of metaphysical and philosophical studies, the artists examine the Indian parable of the child Krishna, who is wrongly accused by his mother, to have eaten dirt, and at whose command wide opens his mouth. When the mother looks inside, she sees the entire timeless universe, of which every part is the whole. “Kairos” – the title derives from the Greek language – on the other hand, is about the “eternal present” through photographic juxtapositions of now and time.
“The Infinite Plan“, created in 2012 by female artist Yuki Tawada, born in Yokohama in 1978, moves on a fine line between photography, painting and sculpture. This large format colorful artwork is made of layers of color photographs, that were torn and burnt.
Takahiro Yamamoto takes old photographs and postcards as a template for his photorealistic portraits. He reproduces his subjects precisely in the finest and most minute details. He thus moves within the old traditions of Japanese photography of the nineteenth century, such as Kusakabe Kimbei, Felix Beato or Baron Stillfried. The artist describes the concept of his series „Re-view” and „Reconstruction” as a “recycling of visual information”, in which the viewer is no longer able to recognise the true truth behind the perceived truth.
The illustrated works from the series „About Paintings” by Junji Yamada combine photography, sculpture and painting. They arise in several complex work steps. The subjects of famous paintings, such as “Waterlilies” by Claude Monet, are reproduced by Yamada in plaster to three-dimensional figures, which he arranges exactly like the original and then photographs in black and white, in the size of the original, thus transferring the work into two-dimensionality. After that, he produces a copy of the original as a copper engraving, which he prints on the photograph, and then partially retraces or colors in detail with resin or pearl pigments. The artist explores the phenomenon of reality and illusion or fiction with which, as Yamada says, “art can fly free.”
Text by Achim Manthey