I took some time out of my day to visit the Japanese American National Museum. Lately, I have been enjoying the smaller art exhibits. As much as I love a big museum with an extensive collection, I find myself getting overwhelmed. Maybe its living in the digital age, we are constantly inundated with imagery of all sorts and I think I have become more sensitive to the overstimulation. The concept of taking the time to look and think about process is something I have been asking of myself and others. It can be challenging, but I always try to remember that there is so much work and dedication involved in creating art.
I really connected to the Making Waves exhibit at the JANM. Most of the photography was produced during the 1920's and 1930's with a focus on Los Angeles and San Francisco. The photographers were able to transform these commonplace things into a surreal image. The manipulation of textures and dimensions was impressive and they are composed in this contemplative and subtle way. I think that's exactly what I loved about this exhibit; it made me stop. I was drawn in by all the nuances and seeing all components working to make a beautiful photograph.
A few favorites...
Shigema Uyeda, Reflections on the Oil Ditch, c .1925, gelatin print
Asahachi Kono, Pond Fantasy, c. 1930, gelatin silver print.
Hiromu Kira, “The Thinker,” c. 1930. Gelatin silver print.
Kaye Shimojima, c. 1928, Edge of a Pond, silver print