Blue Lotus Gallery Photo Exhibition HK: Yasuhiro Ogawa 小川康博 | Into The Silence

Blue Lotus Gallery Photo Exhibition HK: Yasuhiro Ogawa 小川康博 | Into The Silence

Diary

Blue Lotus Gallery Photo Exhibition HK: Yasuhiro Ogawa 小川康博 | Into The Silence

Blue Lotus Gallery is one of the best places for everyone to view photographers’ work, including Greg Girard. It is a must-visit gallery if you are a photo enthusiast and curious about the top photographers out there. I think the best way to enjoy someone’s work is to have it as a physical print, on the wall. The choice of paper, ink, or the acrylic or glass framing also affects how the image looks. It reflects the choices of the artist and the way they want to present their work.

Last Saturday, after the secret photowalk event with Genie Friends and before Felix went back to London, I met him and Simone. We decided to check out the latest exhibition by Yasuhiro Ogawa, a Japanese photographer I have been following for quite some time on Instagram. I was surprised to meet him in person. I have a soft spot for moody photographs, and I enjoy looking at his photos for the tranquility and calmness they convey. The way he captures the colour tones reminds me of cinematic scenes and has an abstract sense of memory. There are elements of people, but there is also a sense of loneliness. The photos are well-connected with texture, from the extension of blue hues to the velvet train seats, and the man drinking in the bar in a slightly warmer tone. What’s better than Mr. Ogawa himself explaining his work to us? I highly recommend you check out this exhibition at the Blue Lotus Gallery!

The exhibition is currently on display from March 16 to April 28, 2024.

Blue Lotus Gallery
28 Pound Lane, Sheung Wan
Hong Kong S.A.R., China
open Tue–Sunday, 11am–6pm

info@bluelotus-gallery.com
t/whatsapp: +852 6100 1295

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About the Exhibition:

Yasuhiro Ogawa’s brand new project Into the Silence, soon to be released as a photobook published by Blue Lotus Editions Hong Kong, captures the rugged yet timeless beauty of Japan’s northern region.

The story of Matsuo Bashō’s journey through the northern provinces of Japan in the 17th century, as recounted in his travelogue “The Narrow Road to the Deep North,” (“Oku no Hosomichi”) is a testament to the enduring mystique of the country’s interior. In the summer of 1689, Bashō set out on his journey with his traveling companion Sora. They traveled on foot, carrying only minimal provisions and staying in humble lodgings along the way. Bashō was seeking inspiration for his poetry, and he found it in the natural beauty and cultural richness of the places he visited.

Despite its rich cultural and natural heritage, this region remains relatively unknown to many people, both within and outside of Japan. However, a recent photobook by Yasuhiro Ogawa titled Into the Silence offers a glimpse into this little-explored world, highlighting both the beauty and challenges of this remote region.

Like Bashō before him, Ogawa set out on a journey through the Tōhoku region, unlike Bashō, who traveled on foot with pen in hand, Ogawa preferred to move by train and occasional ferry with camera in hand.  His photographs capture the rugged beauty of the landscape, from snow-covered mountains to misty forests but also include mondain house formations, deserted roads and glimpses of wild oceans, often shot through foggy windows on a train in motion. Through his lens, Ogawa reveals a world that is both remote and timeless, a world in stillness and motion.

Despite the passage of centuries, the challenges faced by Bashō on his journey are still evident in Ogawa’s photographs. The loneliness and isolation of the road are palpable in the shots of empty trains, lone tracks or roads and desolate hotel interiors shot. So are the physical challenges of traversing rough terrain and inclement weather documented in his muted photographs.

What is striking about Ogawa’s photographs is the contrast between the beauty and tranquility of the landscape and the harsh realities of life in this remote region. From plain coastal towns to empty streets, Ogawa’s images reveal the toll that economic decline and depopulation have taken on the area. Yet, amidst the unostentatiousness, there remains a sense of hope and resilience. In many ways, Ogawa’s photobook is a continuation of Bashō’s journey. Both men sought to explore and capture the essence of this little-known region, and both found inspiration in the beauty and challenges of the road. While times have changed, and the region has undergone significant transformation, the enduring mystique of the interior of Japan lives on. Through “Into the Silence,” Yasuhiro Ogawa offers a glimpse into this world, and like Bashō will inspire generations of poets and travelers, both in Japan and around the world.

十七世紀時,被稱為俳聖的俳人 松尾芭蕉 於三百多年前的江戶時代,踏上了一趟穿越日本北陸地區的旅程,並以旅途中的所見所聞寫成知名文學作品《奧之細道》。在1689年的夏天,芭蕉 與他的門人 河合曾良 為伴,展開了他們的一生路程最遙遠的征途。他們徒步跋涉,隨行之物極簡,沿途入住簡陋的居所作息,一心一意欣賞所到之處的自然之美和文化,尋找創作俳句的靈感。

儘管這個北陸地區富有文化色彩及大量自然遺產,但對許多人而言,無論是日本國內還是國外,這個地區並非受大眾所為熟悉。 然而,小川康博 最新的系列《Into The Silence》將為我們展示這個鮮為人知的世界,以影像描繪出這個偏遠地區的壯麗及寧靜。

小川康博 跟隨 松尾芭蕉 的步伐,踏上了這段穿越東北地區的旅途;不同之處是,芭蕉 執筆徒步而行,小川 則手持相機以火車和渡輪代步。他的作品捕捉了崎嶇不平的山脈、雲霧交織的森林,同時也捕捉了平凡的房屋、荒涼的道路和茫茫大海。很多作品都是透過火車行駛時的霧濛窗戶拍攝,小川 以鏡頭展現了一個既遙遠又永恆的世界,一個靜止運轉的世界。

儘管 松尾芭蕉 當年的征途已年深日久,但箇中的思緒仍然可見於 小川康博 的作品之中:空無一人的火車、孤獨的鐵軌與道路、荒涼的酒店房間…… 旅途伴隨的孤寂和寂寥感是明顯的。他沈靜的影像中也記錄了穿越崎嶇地形和惡劣天氣的挑戰性。

小川康博 的作品,引人注目的地方在於風景的美麗與寧靜之間,與這個偏遠地區的嚴酷現實作出對比。從平凡的海岸小鎮到空空蕩蕩的街道,小川 的影像展現出經濟衰退和人口不足對這個地區的影響。 然而,在樸實無華中,仍然存在著希望和韌性。《Into The Silence》系列正是 芭蕉 旅程的延續,他倆都試圖探索和捕捉這個鮮為人知地區的本質,兩者都在旅途所見之美和挑戰中找到靈感。雖然時代已經改變,這個地區也經歷了巨大的變革,但日本內陸地區的神秘感仍然不絕。 透過《Into The Silence》,小川 就像 芭蕉 一樣,以創作激勵著日本和世界各地的藝術家、詩人和旅行者。

About Yasuhiro Ogawa 小川康博

Born in Kanagawa in 1968, Ogawa’s interest in photography was sparked at the age of 24 after encountering the work of Sebastião Salgado in a magazine.

Through his lens, Ogawa creates ethereal and dreamlike images that transport the viewer to another world. His photographs often feature misty landscapes, solitary figures, and a sense of stillness and contemplation. Overall, Yasuhiro Ogawa’s work is a testament to the power of photography to evoke emotion, inspire introspection, and reveal the beauty and wonder of the world around us. Through his unique perspective and emotional depth, Yasuhiro Ogawa captures the beauty and mystery of travel, creating images that are both timeless and evocative. 

Ogawa’s work has been exhibited in fairs, galleries and museums around the world, including solo and group exhibitions such as Photo London 2023, Blue Lotus Gallery Hong Kong (2020), Futashika-na-Chizu at Kodak Photo Salon, Tokyo (1999), Winter Journey at Doozo Gallery, Rome (2013), and Contes des iles et Paysages de la Mer du Japon at Inbetween Gallery, Paris (2018). He has published five photo books, including ‘Cascade’ (Sokyusha, 2017) and ‘The Dreaming’ (Sokyusha & Blue Lotus editions, 2022), and has won several awards, including the Taiyo Award and The Photographic Society of Japan New Comer Award.

Yasuhiro Ogawa is represented by Blue Lotus Gallery, Hong Kong. He currently resides in Tokyo.

小川 於1968年生於日本神奈川縣。90年代初深受大師 Sebastião Salgado 的作品啟發而踏入攝影領域。

小川透過他的鏡頭創造出空靈夢幻的影像,將觀眾帶到另一個世界。他的照片經常呈現霧濛濛的風景、孤獨的人物以及寧靜和沈思的感覺。小川康博 的作品證明了攝影帶來喚起情感、激發人心以及揭示世界之美和奇蹟的力量。透過他獨特的視角和情感深度,小川 捕捉了旅行的美麗和神秘,創造了永恆且令人回味的影像。

小川 的作品曾在世界各地的博覽會、畫廊和博物館展出,包括個展和聯展,如 Photo London 2023、Blue Lotus Gallery (2021)、東京柯達攝影沙龍的 Futashika-na-Chizu (1999)、羅馬 Doozo 畫廊的《冬季之旅》(2013 年),以及巴黎 In Between 畫廊的《Contes des iles et Paysages de la Mer du Japon》(2018 年)。他出版了六本攝影集,包括《Cascade》(草九社,2017 年)和《The Dreaming》(草草社和藍蓮花版,2022 年),並獲得了多項獎項,包括太陽獎和日本攝影協會新人獎。

小川康博由 Blue Lotus Gallery 代理。他目前作為自由攝影師並定居東京。

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