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At Dusk


Dusk, the transitional hour bridging day and night, symbolizes the border between conscious and unconscious, light and dark or life and death. When it is getting dark, things become invisible, and instead, what normally invisible starts to appear. Further, in ancient Japanese culture, dusk was considered to be the time when one might encounter dark creatures. The images of “At Dusk” are to visualize inner reality of a person who has been through change in her life, moving from one culture to another. While it is a personal project, it has a possibility to be collective, triggering similar evocative effects in a viewer’s mind.

The images exist somewhere between reality and fantasy, and those often somber images are inspired by the fragmented memories of my childhood, long discarded fears and vaguely recalled nightmares. They trigger feelings such as nostalgia, anxiety or something indefinable in one’s mind. Living in this highly modernized and organized society, I feel an urge to be in touch with my childhood I spent in a rural village in north Japan, where old tales with dark undertones were still alive. The images are indirectly connected to the stories I inherited orally from my mother, grandmother and great-grandmother, curiously it was always from female family members, of ghosts and mysterious creatures. And such stories are interwoven delicately with both beauty and horror. As Haruki Murakami, a Japanese novelist, often writes about the entrances to the darker parallel universe, disguised as a dried well, a Ferris wheel or a forgotten hotel room, those images provide a viewer a peephole to obscure side of one’s mind.

When those slightly enigmatic photos, mostly shot right after sunset, reflect somehow the familiar sights of my home and childhood. The obscurity is the key that enables to capture the images beyond time and distance, for it creates the images without realistic details. They suggest the inner urgency to visualize intimate views towards the past. It might be possible for a person to be able to recapture something essential she might have left behind long ago as the images. The images of the peripheral corners of a city, often of with ordinary domestic animals, were shot unconsciously during my nightly walks around my neighborhood. The images provide some kind of psychological comfort as they show something fundamental in poetic form beyond time and space.

"At Dusk" is the winner of Swiss Photo-Three Award (Dec 2019).

"At Dusk" is presented at Photo IS:RAEL (Dec 2019)