The introduction of photography into avant-garde art started in the 1920's and 30's with Dada, Surrealism and Constructivism. Pop Art of the latter half of the 50's took in photographs and the multiple images onto pictorial surface. The artists of Minimal-Conceptualism of the '70's used photography as a medium to expunge subjects from their works to purely visualize their concepts.
Japan saw some photographic expressions in art in MAVO, Action and Futurist Art Association in response to the Russian Avant-Garde and Futurism in the 1920s, but it was from the late sixties to early seventies that photography was truly used in contemporary art in Japan.
The artists of the time used the attributes of photography such as reproducibility, plurality, realism, recordability, and objectivity to create 'the images of photographic images' by combining the direct method by photography with other media such as print or drawing as collage so as to avoid straight photography.
What was important was that their focus was not on the photographed objects themselves but on the disclosure of: visual structures constituted of the action of photographing and that of being photographed; the relationship between reality and virtual images; or the act of photographing and the state of being photographed. For the expression of such bipolarity and duality, the medium of collage was used very effectively by many artists then.
Our booth will present how each artist attempted between reality and art the actual expressions of the issues captured in their daily life by using the method and definition of collage.
In recent years, contemporary Japanese photography from the 1970s are achieving high recognitions and gathering attentions overseas. Recently, three large exhibitions of For a New World to Come (The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston 2015) Performances for the Camera (Tate Modern 2016) and Provoke: Photography in Japan between Protest and Performance, 1960-1975 (Albertina, Vienna, Winterthur Fotomuseum, Switzerland, The Art Institute of Chicago, and LE BAL, Paris 2016-2017) were organized.
Prior to these projects, Yumiko Chiba Associates has held To the 1970s in 2011. It has also co-curated similar exhibitions with Marianne Boesky Gallery in New York in 2014, as well as with Galerie 1900-2000 and Galerie Christophe Gaillard in Paris in 2017 to present them in these galleries. Some of the works exhibited in these shows are now in the collection of renowned art institutions, e.g. the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, the Museum of Modern Art, and Centre Pompidou.