—Photographer: Daisuke Yokota
—Design: Geoff Han, NYC
—Essay: Daisuke Yokota
—Afterword: Marc Feustel
—English Translation: Daniel Gonzalez
—Japanese Translation: Yoshi Shiraishi
—Printer: Thomas Bossuyt, die Keure, Belgium
—8" x 11"
—Edition of 500
—OUT OF PRINT
Session Press is pleased to announce “Taratine,” the first US monograph by acclaimed Japanese photographer Daisuke Yokota. Highly regarded for his technical and aesthetic kinships with the avant-garde Mono-ha movement of the ‘60s and with Provoke-era masters such as Daido Moriyama and Takuma Nakahira, “Taratine” represents a new direction for Yokota, one that centers his work for the first time in another Japanese tradition, that of the confessional photographic I-novel. Comprised of photographs and a moving essay penned by Yokota, Taratine is his most personal work to date.
“Taratine” brings together two bodies of new work—one from a road trip to Tohoku in 2007, and a second taken in Tokyo in 2014. The Tohoku photographs were inspired by Yokota happening upon an ancient ginkgo tree in the Aomori prefecture. Called taratine, this tree has been worshipped by generations of women for its legendary fertility-enhancing properties. Yokota was reminded both of the Tohoku region’s traditional—and lingering—connection to the awe of natural spirits (the influence of Jomon-period animism) and of memories from his own childhood.
From this experience came a photographic ode to those traditions and memories, one that also expresses his strong admiration for the important women in his life: his mother, in the case of the Aomori pictures; and his girlfriend, in the Tokyo pictures. By fusing the two together in “Taratine,” Yokota is charting a new direction for his work.
As Marc Feustel observes in the afterword, “Unlike its predecessors, “Taratine” is driven by a more ambiguous and slippery set of emotions and sensations. A need for maternal love evolves into lust and desire. As much a book about sounds and smells as one of images—“Taratine” heightens all the senses as it breathes fresh air into a grand Japanese tradition.”
セッションプレスの7作目の写真集は、2013年にオランダの写真雑誌「Foam Magazine」のTalent Issueに選出され、2015年にはPhoto LondonにてJohn Kobal Awardの初代受賞者となるなど、欧米で大きく注目される日本人フォトグラファー、横田大輔の『垂乳根』です。本書はふたつの未発表作品シリーズから構成されており、東京のホテルの一室で彼女を被写体とした作品と、現在の作風の原点ともなった2007年の青森でのロードトリップの中で撮影された作品が収められています。またこれら未発表作品に加え、作者自身による幼少期の夏の体験を綴ったエッセイや、日本写真を専門とするキュレーター、Marc Feustel書き下ろしのテキストも掲載。本書は作者による女性への讃歌であり、荒木経惟『センチメンタルな旅』や『わが愛、陽子』、そして深瀬昌久『鴉』や『洋子』に続く、日本写真の伝統である「私写真」の系譜を受け継ぐ作品です。
Searching back through the fog of memory, I see myself as a young boy, not yet ten. Guided by my brother’s outstretched hand, I’m drawn toward the din of our housing project’s summer festival. The sun’s rays bounce hot off the pavement from its apex in the noontime sky, but the insistent boom of the taiko drum cascades off the city walls undeterred, over the heads of the brimming throng of revelers, their cries drowned out by the ear-piercing deathsong of the cicadas.
Clutching the coins entrusted to our small palms, my brother and I approach the snaking row of wooden stalls set up by the festival food vendors. He buys yakitori and yakisoba for the dinner table. With the leftover change, I buy my favorite, candy apple. Having enjoyed the festivities, we leave for home, where mother will be awaiting our return.
Racing up the staircase, we reach the narrow landing leading to our apartment door. A chill air hangs still, trapped by the grey concrete walls.
My brother tries the doorknob, but finding it locked, stands on his toes to ring the bell. I press my ear to the cold metal door, but do not hear the usual sound of my mother’s swift footsteps, always quick to welcome us home.
Helpless, we retreat, and resign ourselves to waiting patiently on the steps, sure that our mother will not be long to return.
I remember the heat that day, hotter than ever before.
The half-eaten candy apple clutched between my fingertips liquifies in my saliva and the thick, choking humidity, in turn releasing streams of its sticky, sugary sweetness. Oozing down my wrist as a slug slides languorously across soft, pudgy flesh, the gel stops just short of my elbow, pulled into a fine gossamer thread as it trickles to the ground. Pooling at my feet, I watch spellbound as the syrupy orb glistens brilliantly in the waning sun.
Decades later, muggy summer days never fail to transport me back to this scene from my childhood. In the intervening years, I’ve grown into a man, one big enough to open the door and wash his own hands without waiting for the help of his mother. Yet scrub as I might, to this day I haven’t been able to loosen that sickly sweet, sticky sensation’s grip from memory.
(Translation: Daniel Gonzalez)
Daisuke Yokota was born in Saitama, Japan in 1983, and is a graduate of the Nippon Photography Institute. Yokota had been represented by g/p gallery, Tokyo under direction of Shigeo Goto by 2018. One of Japan’s most distinguished emerging photographers, he was the inaugural winner of the first Outset Unseen award at FOAM Museum in the Netherlands in 2013. In 2014, “Vertigo” (Newfave, Tokyo) was nominated for the Aperture Foundation PhotoBook Award, and, in 2015, he received the John Kobal residency award at Photo London. Thus far in 2015, he has performed at the “Shashin: Photography from Japan” exhibition in New York, as well as at the “In the Wake: Japanese Photographers Respond to 3/11” exhibition at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.
日本写真芸術専門学校卒業。2008年「キヤノン新世紀」佳作、2010年「第2回写真1_WALL 展」グランプリ受賞。2013年、アムステルダムのUnseen Photo FairにおいてThe Outset I Unseen Exhibition Fundの初受賞者となり、 2014年にFoam写真美術館（アムステルダム）にて個展を開催。同年、写真集『VERTIGO』が、Aperture Foundation PhotoBook Awardsにノミネートされる。2015年、フォトロンドンにおいてJohnKobal Residency Awardを受賞。2015年7月から9月まで開催中のアルル国際写真フェスティバルでの『Another Language』展に参加。