Monday, September 17, 2007

Rinko Kawauchi (Cade's pick)


Rinko Kawauchi is a photographer from Japan who uses color film and a 6x6cm Rolleiflex camera. I am interested in Kawauchi because the simplicity of her photos somehow goes beyond my own idea of simplicity. Her views of the world make me think that she knows something about her subjects that maybe no one else will be able to pick up on right away, or at least at first look. Also, her series are constructed so that each photo must be considered in its relation to the photos it appears with – the connection between all of them must be carefully considered before the meaning of the individual photograph can even be approached. Her use of the square format is definitely something that I'm drawn to, having used a similar camera and format. While her photos are square, themes of roundness and circles are evident. Her approach defies the constraint of the frame while at the same time allowing her subjects to be subtly defined by the square. She makes you wonder whether she caught a serendipitous moment or a carefully examined scene. It seems possible that her work is a combination of both. Interviews are at http://www.pingmag.jp/2006/08/11/10-questions-to-rinko-kawauchi-about-photography/ and http://www.kopenhagen.dk/index.php?id=7776
Like Masha D'yans her work is often defined by its color, something that struck me right away about both artists. However, I think her colors are more subtle, whereas D'yans' colors are the life of the work.

1 comment:

Greg Thielker said...

Very nice photos. I like how you discuss the issue of format. It is, of course, a common concern- and I believe that many artists have felt strongly about the effect of the h x w ratio (i.e. golden section, etc.). I recently was very excited about canvases that were almost square (18x20", 22x24"). We tend to perceive things in regular units - a perfect square, or golden rectangle (3:4), so its also interesting to come close enough to resemble that format but still be a little off.