co-curated by Miho Odaka / Federica Chiochetti
Deep inside split minerals are beautiful microcosms that are unimaginable from the exterior. On the other hand, the world that we usually see is a mere modicum of a surface layer. Beneath the dwellings where we live and the surfaces on which we walk, billions of years of history surely exist as strata. From those strata, fossils and earthenware are often discovered, and we who live on the surface layer can listen carefully to the breath of life that surely lived in the period of the relics that are unearthed. On the theme of "Invisible Stratum," T3 PHOTO FESTIVAL TOKYO introduces works by artists who have attempted to visualize, by means of photographs, the various invisible layers that exist in our world. Just like the history and time axes possessed by the subjects in the photos, the various emotions and memories of the viewers of the photos are also superimposed. With the metaphor of a stratum as the hint, we hope that the photographs that help establish visible things, invisible things, things that exist and things that disappear, will act as a clue to understanding this world.
One of greatest Italian modern poets, Eugenio Montale, winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature, published, in 1925, a most powerful poem that, according to Italo Calvino, encapsulates a small and somewhat nihilistic phenomenology of perception. The poem reads: Maybe one morning, walking in dry, glassy air, I'll turn and see the miracle occur: nothing at my back, the void behind me, with a drunkard's terror. Then, as if on a screen, trees houses hills will suddenly collect for the usual illusion. But it will be too late, and I'll walk on silent among the men who don't look back, with my secret. These two incredible stanzas describe a miracle that could occur, in a moment of extraordinary transparency, to 'men that look back': seeing the absolute void that lurks behind the thin visible layers ('as if on a screen') of what we call reality ('trees, houses, hills'). Behind the 'usual illusion' of what appears to exist, maybe, one day we could see the nothing, which is normally invisible and kept as a terrifying secret. However, invisibility does not always have a negative connotation, such as being associated with the void, the nothing. We deal with invisible things everyday and they can be extremely positive in that they reveal a whole universe of other things, entities, energies, information, networks, beings, feelings, memories, dreams, etc. Despite their presumed oxymoronic relation, photography and invisibility have always 'flirted' since the medium's inception, if we consider the 1860s spirit photographers who claimed to have captured ghosts and paranormal entities in their images. The supernatural has not been the only element in the discourse. Notions such as the 'optical unconscious', i.e. the numerous unintentionally captured details revealed by a photographic image, or the 'unphotographable', i.e. the presumed inability of the photographic apparatus to represent immaterial aspects of reality, as denounced by Bertold Brecht, have always accompanied the histories and theories of photography. In responding to the theme of Invisible Stratum I felt important to encourage the viewer to reflect on the different nature of layers of invisibility that we encounter in our everyday life and their implications. From concealment from public knowledge and surveillance, to voyeurism, optical illusions, gender issues and the spiritual world, the idea is to invite the viewers to adopt a contemplative and critical mode when they experience the intrinsic ambiguities of the photographic image.
The Tokyo International Photography Competition (TIPC) was established with the aim of forming a bridge to the world's photography community. This, the 4th such competition also invited entries from around the globe, and from approximately 1,300 applicants, eight were selected by curators, photographers and photography directors active around the world. The theme for the entries was "ORIGIN." Who are we? Where have we come from? Where do we belong? Enjoy the answers expressed by photographers with various roots, from the United States, Belgium, Italy, Canada and the like. The prizewinning photographs are exhibited at the T3 PHOTO FESTIVAL TOKYO, as well as in Singapore and New York, and are highly acclaimed around the world.
The world is facing the greatest humanitarian challenges in recent memory. Around the globe, 128 million people are trapped in crisis and struggling to survive. A record-breaking 65 million have fled their homes due to conflict and violence, many of them leaving with little more than the clothes on their backs, in search of safety and assistance. Through two new photo projects, the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) has embarked on a journey to tell the stories of people affected by conflict and natural disasters. The photos, taken by photographer Vincent Tremeau in some of the world's most severe emergencies, aim to shed light on what it means to live through a crisis. The first exhibit, One Day I Will, documents the hopes of young people affected by humanitarian emergencies. Aged between 6 and 18 years old, children in different crisis-affected countries portray what they want to be when they grow up using costumes and props from their surroundings. What We Share, the second exhibit, delves into the themes of displacement and solidarity. Photographed in Diffa, Niger, the series tells the stories of people who have fled violence and conflict across the border from north-eastern Nigeria, and of the local communities who have taken them in.
《-ORIGIN-》Tokyo International Photography Competition (TIPC) – Winners Exhibition
"One Day I Will" / "What We Share"
by UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA)