Daido Moriyama – Silkscreens, Hamiltons Gallery, until 20th December
There is little doubt that Daido Moriyama is one of Japan’s leading photographers. Born in Osaka in 1938 his formative years were influenced by the war years and the American occupation of Japan and this can be clearly seen in his works. They reflect the conflicts and dichotomy between tradition and modernism, spirituality and commercialism, old and new.
Somewhat grainy and dark his work is mainly in black and white, shaded with grey, but there is always an element of photographic chance in the mixture. Although he emerged from the Japanese Provoke movement one can see the influence of other national and international exponents, including Warhol and William Klein.
His images are real, gritty and often unsentimental depicting the realities on the edges of street life and protest. In the 80s his perspective changed to a lighter, sharper large-scale format.
This is Hamilton’s inaugural show of his work – Silkscreens. Sixteen photographs from Moriyama’s oeuvre have been exclusively produced for Hamiltons as silkscreens on canvas in a limited edition of three each. They were selected by the gallery’s owner Tim Jeffries and among the subject titles are Memory of Dog 2, 1982; DOCUMENTARY 93 (‘86.6 Setagaya-ku, Tokyo), 1986; The City I Always Had a Hard Time Leaving, 1976 and One More Peek, 1966.