#3 in the Photographers of Japan series, dedicated to Shinzō Fukuhara (1883–1948) and Rosō Fukuhara (1892–1946).
Often called the father of Japanese modern photography, Shinzo Fukuhara– a traveler, a businessman, an aesthete, a theorist, is an author of nostalgic, melancholy pictures and considered a pioneer of Japanese art photography and a true renaissance man. Trained as a scientist and pharmacologist in Japan and the U.S. (Columbia University), he was the first CEO of Shiseido Company, Ltd and a pioneer in modern cosmetic marketing and design. In 1912 he traveled to Europe visiting England, Italy, Germany and France, where he settled in Paris. There he joined a group of young Japanese artists and while there took over 2000 photographs of the city (later published as “Paris et la Seine” in 1922). In 1923 Shinzo Fukuhara published his groundbreaking book “Hikari to Sono Kaicho” (Light with its Harmony) which proposed applying the Japanese aesthetic of haiku poetry to photography.
Shizo’s contributions to creating and promoting photography as an art form cannot be overstated. In 1921 he and his brother Roso Fukuhara established the Shashin Geijutsu-sha, a group of art photographers dedicated to pictorialism. This group mounted exhibitions at the prestigious Shiseido Gallery and published the journal Shashin Geijutsu. His brother Roso Fukuhara was also an accomplished photographer. Despite never having his photography published, he is considered a major contributor to the Japanese pictorialist photographic tradition with his strikingly modern approach, breaking from the past to create experimental photographic juxtapositions and printing methods. In 1924 Shinzo and Roso founded the Nihon Shashin-kai (Japan Photographic Society).
In his essay, “The History and Theory of Photography”, Kotaro Iizawa writing about the Fukuhara brothers wrote, “Even amid such exquisite settings as a vast field, tall mountains, or a city street, one must be in a place where the light is just right, or one does not have the material for a photograph.” These words, stated by Shinzo Fukuhara, keep alive the photos and the memories of the Fukuhara brothers even today.”
* Condition: Very Good/Fine (clean, tight copy) – All care is taken to provide accurate condition details of used books, photos available on request.
- Shinzō Fukuhara and Rosō Fukuhara,
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