November 3, 2011 - November 27, 2011
Silent Respiration of Forests
“Silent Respiration of Forests” is an evocative series of small-format platinum palladium prints on hand-made Japanese gampi paper. The project began when Japanese artist Takeshi Shikama began building a mountain lodge—by hand—from trees he felled himself on-site. Shikama’s photographs made in Japan and beyond are both startling and quiet; they reveal the darkness, textures, and infinite variety of the forest.
“One day in early autumn in 2001, just as twilight was setting in, I had lost track of the mountain paths. I happened to wander into a shady forest, where I found myself suddenly seized with a strong desire to take photographs. The following day, I set out once again, carrying my camera with me this time, and searched for the same forest. This experience made me realize that I was not taking photographs of the forest out of my own will, but that the forest was inducing me to take its photographs.”
Takeshi Shikama was born in Tokyo in 1948. After a lengthy career as a designer, Shikama turned to photography and began making work which would ultimately become “Silent Respiration of Forests.” The series was published as a book by toseisha, Tokyo, in 2008. Shikama’s work has been exhibited internationally in Japan, Europe, and the U.S., and is held in the permanent collections of the Bibliothèque Nationale de France (Paris), Museet for Fotokunst Brandts (Odense, Denmark), and the Museum of Photographic Arts (San Diego). He currently lives and works in Tokyo.
Presentation of "Silent Respiration of Forests" at Blue Sky is made possible in part by The Asahi Shimbun Foundation.