© Hiroshi Sugimoto Neue Nationalgalerie 0708 Berlin Video 2008
Japanese Photographer | Born: 1948
Hiroshi Sugimoto was born in Tokyo, Japan, in 1948, and lives and works in New York and Tokyo. His interest in art began early. His reading of André Breton’s writings led to his discovery of Surrealism and Dada and a lifelong connection to the work and philosophy of Marcel Duchamp. Central to Sugimoto’s work is the idea that photography is a time machine, a method of preserving and picturing memory and time. This theme provides the defining principle of his ongoing series, including "Dioramas" (1976–), "Theaters" (1978–), and "Seascapes" (1980–). Sugimoto sees with the eye of the sculptor, painter, architect, and philosopher. He uses his camera in a myriad of ways to create images that seem to convey his subjects’ essence, whether architectural, sculptural, painterly, or of the natural world. He places extraordinary value on craftsmanship, printing his photographs with meticulous attention and a keen understanding of the nuances of the silver print and its potential for tonal richness—in his seemingly infinite palette of blacks, whites, and grays. Recent projects include an architectural commission at Naoshima Contemporary Art Center in Japan, for which Sugimoto designed and built a Shinto shrine, and the photographic series, "Conceptual Forms," inspired by Duchamp’s "Large Glass: The Bride Stripped Bare by her Bachelors, Even." Sugimoto has received fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts; in 2001, he received Hasselblad Foundation International Award in Photography. He has had one-person exhibitions at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; the Museum of Modern Art, New York; the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles; Contemporary Arts Museum, Houston; Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago; and Hara Museum of Contemporary Art, Tokyo; among others. Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington, DC, and Mori Art Museum, Tokyo, were joint organizers of a 2005 Sugimoto retrospective.
Author: Hiroshi Sugimoto
Year: 2014 - Pages: 118
Hiroshi Sugimoto (born 1948) began his four-decade-long series Dioramas in 1974, inspired by a trip to the American Museum of Natural History in New York. Surrounded by the museum's elaborate, naturalistic dioramas, Sugimoto realized that the scenes jumped to life when looked at with one eye closed. Recreated forestry and stretches of uninhabited land, wild, crouching animals against painted backgrounds and even prehistoric humans seemed entirely convincing with this visual trick, which launched a conceptual exploration of the photographic medium that has traversed his entire career. Focusing his camera on individual dioramas as though they were entirely surrounding scenes, omitting their frames and educational materials and ensuring that no reflections enter the shot, his subjects appear as if photographed in their natural habitats. He also explores the power of photography to create history--in his own words, "photography functions as a fossilization of time." Hiroshi Sugimoto: Dioramas narrates a story of the cycle of life, death and rebirth, from prehistoric aquatic life to the propagation of reptile and animal life to Homo sapiens' destruction of the earth, circling back to its renewal, where flora and fauna flourish without man. Here Sugimoto writes his own history of the world, an artist's creation myth.
Author: Hiroshi Sugimoto, Kerry Brougher
Publisher: Hatje Cantz
Year: 2010 - Pages: 400
Genius of the large-format camera, the long exposure and the silverprint, New York-based photographer Hiroshi Sugimoto has made pictures that seem to contain whole aeons of time within themselves, and suggest an infinite palette of tonal wealth in blacks, grays and whites. Many of these images have now become a part of art culture's popular image bank (as U2's use of Sugimoto's "Boden Sea" for the cover of their 2009 album, No Line on the Horizon, demonstrated), while simultaneously evoking photography's earliest days: "I probably call myself a postmodern-experienced pre-postmodern modernist," he once joked to an interviewer. This absolutely exquisite retrospective is an expanded edition of Hatje Cantz's 2005 volume. It is the first to feature works from all of Sugimoto's series to date: his celebrated portraits of wax figures, his incredible seascapes that seem to suggest a person's first conscious view of the ocean, the extremely long exposures of theaters which elevate the white, luminescent cinema screen and transform it into a magical image of an altar and the fascinating dioramas of scientific display cases, which invite us to travel far into the past. Additions to the original edition are two new groups of works, "Lightning Fields" (2006) and "Photogenic Drawings" (2007).