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Miho Kajioka
Self Portrait
Miho Kajioka
Miho Kajioka

Miho Kajioka

Country: Japan
Birth: 1973

Miho Kajioka was born February 21st, 1973 in Japan and studied at Concordia University and the San Francisco Art institute in the 1990s. Kajioka's artistic practice is in principal snapshot based; she carries her camera everywhere and intuitively takes photos of whatever she finds interesting. These collected images serve as the basic material for her work in the darkroom where she creates her poetic and suggestive image-objects through elaborate, alternative printing methods. Kajioka regards herself more as a painter/drawer than as a photographer. She feels that photographic techniques help her to create works that fully express her artistic vision. Her images evoke a sense of mystery in her constant search for beauty. The focused, creative and respectful way in which she uses the medium of photography to create her works seems to fit in the tradition of Japanese art that is characterized by the specifically Japanese sense of beauty: wabi sabi. Wabi has been described as 'serene attention to simple things' and sabi as 'beauty acquired through the patina of time'. The artist regards herself as a maker of objects rather than a maker of photographs, using moments of her everday life as both inspiration and material.

Source: Peter Fetterman Gallery



Miho Kajioka (b. 1973, Japan, lives in Kyoto) studied fine art in the United States and Canada and started her career as a journalist in her native country Japan. It was after the 2011 earthquake and tsunami that Kajioka was reconnected to her photographic art. Two months after the disaster, while reporting in the coastal city of Kamaishi, where over 800 people died, she found roses blooming beside a blasted building. That mixture of grace and ruin made her think of a Japanese poem:

In the spring, cherry blossoms,
In the summer the cuckoo,
In autumn the moon, and in
Winter the snow, clear, cold.

Written by the Zen monk Dogen, the poem describes the fleeting, fragile beauty of the changing seasons. The roses Kajioka saw in Kamaishi bloomed simply because it was spring. That beautiful and uncomplicated statement, made by roses in the midst of ruin, impressed her, and returned her to photography.

The photos presented, span Kajioka's adulthood, including pictures she took while living abroad, as well as scenes she captured in Japan after the disaster. The little pictures of a flower, or a running boy, are scenes from daily life, as it is. These fragments of her life, from various periods and against changing backdrops, are not so different from each other, and the differences that remain aren't important. Happiness, sadness, beauty and tragedy only exist in our minds. Things are just as they are.

Since 2013 Kajioka's work has been exhibited in France, the Netherlands, Colombia, the United Kingdom, Italy, Germany and Spain.

Source: IBASHO



Exhibitions
2020
tanzaku, The Photographers' Gallery Print Sales (February 7 to March 22)

2019
time travel (duo exhibition with Rens Horn), de ketelfactory, Schiedam, the Netherlands (September 28 to December 22)
And, where did the peacocks go?, International Photo Festival InCadaqués, Cadaqués, Spain (September 20 to 29)
And, where did the peacocks go?, Kunstenfestival Watou, Watou, Belgium (June 29 to September 1)
2018 (all solo)
So it goes, IBASHO Gallery, Antwerp, Belgium (September 9 to November 4, 2018)
So it goes, Caroline O'Breen Gallery, Amsterdam, Netherland (September 8 to October 13, 2018)
Half a dozen, Residency Program, Lisbon, Portugal (May 24 to August 31, 2018)
Unfinished spaces, The Photographers' Gallery, Print Sales, London, UK (Feb 23 to April 14)

2017
And, where did the peacocks go?, Corden Potts Gallery, San Francisco, US (March 23 to April 29)

2016
And, where did the peacocks go?, Galerie VU', Paris, France (June 8 to September 2 – Solo)
Et, où les paons sont-ils allés?, Festival La Gacilly Photo, France (June 3 to September 30)
Grace and Ruin, SeeLevel Gallery, Amsterdam, Netherland
And, where did the peacocks go?, Central Colombo Americano, Bogota, Colombia

2015
Renaissance Photography Prize, Getty Images Gallery, London, UK (Group)
And, did the peacocks go?, ARTBO, Bogota, Colombia (Solo)
And, where did the peacocks go?, Twenty 14 Contemporary, Milan, Italy (Solo)
UNREAL, M2 Gallery, Sydney, Australia (Group)

2014
LAYERS, Microprisma, Rome, Italy (Solo)
as it is, Fotografika Galerie, Gland, Switzerland (Solo)
Balade(s) Parcours Photographique, Galerie Le Neuf, Lodève, France (Group)
Boutographies, Montpellier, France (Group)
Catching tails, Linke, Milan, (Group)

2013
As It is, Centro Italiano della Fotografia d'Autore, Bibbiena, Italy (Group)
Reality and Emotion, Valid Foto BCN Gallery, Barcelona (Group)

Galleries

IBASHO, Antwerp, Belgium
The Photographers' Gallery, Print Sales, London, United Kingdom
Galerie Caroline o'Breen, Amsterdam, the Netherlands
Ira Stehmann Fine Art, Munich, Germany
Bildhalle, Zürich, Swizterland
Polka Galerie, Paris, France
Twenty14 Contemporary, Milan, Italy
Peter Fetterman Gallery, Santa Monica, United States
 

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Tim Franco: There is not a precise moment. When I was young, I loved writing stories, then my passion became music. I always wanted to share my ideas and vision of things through some mediums at the end it became photography. Where did you study photography? When I was a kid, my artist mother pushed me from one opening to the other, through museums and galleries. At first I hated it, and then became used to it and started to hang out more and more in her studio, until I took away her old cameras , I have learn through experience, other photographers and reading tutorials. How could you describe your style? Photographers tend to be classified, put into boxes, commercial photographer, photojournalists, artists, etc. I never really know how to classify my work. What I love is telling stories, document facts with an artistic esthetic to it. I also enjoy working on creative commercial assignments. I always try to stay simple in the esthetic and subtle about the story. What kind of gear do you use? Camera, lens, digital, film? For my personal work, I really enjoy medium format. When I see something, most of the time, I ideally want to frame it in square. I don't really like naming brands, they all have different feeling and esthetic and it really depends the look you want to give your image. To name a few I personally work with Hasselblad and old rolleiflex. For commercial work, I use Canon because of their price and availability in terms of lenses.> Do you spend a lot of time editing your images? When shooting film, I usually spend very little time editing, just cleaning dust on films and other small details. When shooting commercial work on digital its another story. Clients are very specific about what they want and color out of raw files needs to go through extensive treatment. My photo agency works with a retouching studio for most of our commercial projects. What advice would you give a young photographer? Those days, its very easy to call yourself a photographer, grab a camera , a couple of nice prime lenses and you can get some good images. But I think young photographers should really focus on what are they trying to say with their images. What makes a great photo is not the instant esthetic of it but the impact that image will have on its viewer. An idea, a sentence, a project you would like to share? One of the main project I worked on for the past year is about one particular city in China called Chongqing. Since 2009, I am going there quite frequently, at the beginning for some press assignments since the city have seen lot of interesting political stories and turmoils but also because it fascinates me. Both from an esthetic point of view and from its stories. This giant megapolis has been forcly populated with countryside people and has now a very hard time to deal its urbanization. "I personally see Chongqing as a macro representation of the whole China. With its tumultuous political history and its growing social pressure for managing farmers coming into urban areas for a better life, all of it pushed by a constant need of investments and fast modernization, I wanted to portray this view of a growing china, far away from the common views of eastern cities such as shanghai or beijing. From a photographic point of view, I have decided to shoot the people in their environment. But I have decided to take a step back, using medium format film camera, I want to transmit the feeling of scales that the city and china in general is facing. Urban Scales, Social Scales, the country's biggest problem is now to find a way to link some extremes the highly rich to the very poor, the extravagant to the meaningful. Vertical Communism is a portrait of chinese a megapolis full of contradiction, trying to keep up with its unpredictable modernization." Your best and worst memory as a photographer? Being a professional photographers gives you a chance to go to many great places and meet amazing people. Sometimes the best memory is all the instants that led you to take a particular photo, the untold stories. What happened in the discussion you had with the person you were about to portray, how did you get to this fantastic point of view etc. For worst memory there is always issues of dealing with authorities, this large gap of misunderstanding between the photographer wanting to tell a story and a person not allowing you to shoot. This is always very annoying. More about METAMORPOLIS More about UNPERSON
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AAP Magazine #35: Colors
November 2023 Online Solo Exhibition
AAP Magazine #35: Colors

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