Fotografisk Skoles Blog

Takuma Nakahira – For a Language to Come

Posted in Bøger, Fotografer, Land / Japan by fotografiskskole on 10. maj 2011

Takuma Nakahiras legendariske fotobog fra 197o, For a Language to Come, blev i 2010 genudgivet af det japanske forlag Osiris.

Nakahira var som andre af sin generations fotografer i Japan stærkt inspireret af  Shomei Tomatsu, og gennem ham blev han venner med Daido Moriyama, som satte ham ind i foto- og mørkekammerteknik.

I 1968 var han med-grundlægger af det kortlivede (ca. halvandet år) men banebrydende Provoke Magazine, som må betegnes som en af milepælene i moderne japansk fotografi. Daido Moriyama blev i øvrigt medlem af Provoke-gruppen fra det andet nummer.

I Masashi Koharas glimrende essay om Nakahira, som kan ses hos American Suburb X, skriver Kohara bl.a. om Provoke-gruppens fotografiske intentioner og om For a Language to Come:

In their joint manifesto they called for a liberation from photography that merely illustrated preconceived meanings, thus provoking »a language to come (thought). At this time, Japan was in the middle of an economic upturn. At the same time, however, people were losing confidence in the established systems and values, and the call for social change reached its climax. Contrary to the prevailing photography of social realism, based upon a theory of alienation that was founded on simple contrasts, the Provoke photographers campaigned against a world of seeming certainty and ceased to ask “What should we photograph?” or “How should we photograph?”, instead asking more fundamental questions such as “What is photography?”, “Who becomes a photographer?” or “What is seeing?”. Their characteristic grainy, blurry, shaky pictures are the photographic expression of their doubt about a photography that amounts to illustrating a self-enclosed aesthetics or language. They are a conclusive reflection of a time whose contours are slowly dissolving. They are attempts not to »shoot« the pictures actively, but rather to allow the pictures to develop on the basis of a deliberately passive stance, with the frequent use of wide-angle lenses and no-finder technique, and thus to rehabilitate the unruly nature (the independent action) of the camera that lies hidden in the concept of »expression«. By reflecting the difference between their own eye and the eye of the camera in the photos in an extreme manner, the Provoke photographers were in search of a way of capturing the form of the world that was eluding them.

In the final phase of Provoke magazine, that existed for a mere year and a half, Nakahira collected scenes from illuminated night-time cities that elude language, and published them in the book of photos For a Language to Come in 1970. The pictures, that convey an urgent sense of capturing the naked world outside of language or consciousness, were presumably intended to depict an anonymous mediator who allows the individual viewer to discover a »direct language« (a language to come).

Essayet beskriver også, hvordan Nakahira efterfølgende forkaster disse ideer om fotografiet, brænder sine negativer, starter forfra med at søge efter en fotografisk retning, kastes ud i alvorlig fotografisk krise, bliver ramt af  akut alkoholforgiftning, hvorved han mister det meste af sin hukommelse og sprogkontrol og tvinges til igen at afsøge nye måder at fotografere på, påvirket af følgerne af alkoholforgiftningen.

Læs anmeldelser af bogen hos Sunday and Wednesday og hos Jeffrey Ladd på hans altid indsigtsfulde blog, 5B4. Læs også udmærket om bogen og om Nakahira hos Osiris.

Vi har tidligere – bl.a. her! -haft indlæg om Daido Moriyama, som iøvrigt i 1972, to år efter Nakahiras bog, udgav den lige så skelsættende bog Farewell Photography, som præsenterede fotografiet i en mindst lige så radikal form (se artikel her) – men det er jo delvist en anden historie.

En fin artikel om Shomei Tomatsu her! En artikel om Provoke og nyere japansk fotografi her!

Bogopslagene er lånt fra hhv. Photoeye og Dalpine.


Skriv et svar

Udfyld dine oplysninger nedenfor eller klik på et ikon for at logge ind:

WordPress.com Logo

Du kommenterer med din WordPress.com konto. Log Out / Skift )

Twitter picture

Du kommenterer med din Twitter konto. Log Out / Skift )

Facebook photo

Du kommenterer med din Facebook konto. Log Out / Skift )

Google+ photo

Du kommenterer med din Google+ konto. Log Out / Skift )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: