Zen Foto Gallery is pleased to present “My Journey, continued”, an exhibition by Tamiko Nishimura from Sep 25 to Oct 17. This exhibition marks Nishimura’s seventh solo presentation with Zen Foto Gallery, featuring vintage silver gelatin prints by the artist in 1979 that were presented at her solo exhibitions at Nikon Salon in the early 80s and some unpublished works.

Nishimura is known for her snapshots of intimate moments encountered in her journeys in high contrast, black and white grainy photographic style. Since the publication of her first book “Shikishima” in 1973, she never ceased to travel and continued to develop her style of snapshots. To date, she has published 10 titles of photography books surrounding different subjects, revealing her unique approach to snapshot photography as a record of her journeys and personal life.

“In the latter half of the 1970s, I concentrated more on shooting Tokyo and walked thoroughly around the Joto (Eastern) and Johoku (Northern) areas which I hadn’t had many chances to visit until then. At that time I would often take along my pre-school daughter to do the shooting. I can still remember how my daughter turned away with a troubled look on her face when a street entertainer, who performed samurai sword fighting in Asakusa, asked her to go with him on his travels.” ー Excerpt from Tamiko Nishimura’s afterword of “My Journey II. 1968-1989”

In conjunction with the exhibition, Zen Foto Gallery will publish “My Journey II. 1968-1989” as the second chapter of “My Journey”. Since the first showing and publication of “My Journey” two years ago, Zen Foto Gallery has been introducing Nishimura’s unreleased works from her early stage to recent years comprehensively as a trilogy, echoing her stance in photography. We sincerely hope that you will take this opportunity to go onboard viewing Nishimura’s vintage works from her continuing journeys.

Artist Profile

Tamiko NISHIMURA

Born in 1948 in Tokyo, Nishimura graduated from Tokyo Photography College (current Tokyo Visual Arts) in 1969. Her graduation work was a photography series of Jōkyō Gekijo (Situation Theatre), forefront of the underground theatre movement led by Jūrō Kara. After her graduation, she met Daido Moriyama, Kōji Taki and Takuma Nakahira, three highly influential members of the Provoke movement. She assisted them in the darkroom from time to time up until 1972, while she continued her personal shooting on her travels. Later in 1973, Nishimura made her debut through the first publication “Shikishima” published by Tokyo Photography College, showcasing her photographs taken from 1969 to 1972 on her journeys around Japan including Hokkaidō, Tōhoku, Hokuriku, Kantō, Kansai and Chūgoku regions. She also began to travel to Southeastern Asia and Europe in the 1980s. Nishimura’s language of expression is poetic, spiritual and deeply personal. Looking back on her career, Nishimura describes it as a sequence of journeys, and she continued photographing with her nomadic lifestyle. Her photography, revealing what is beyond a journey, is a manifold portrait of life wherever she encounters.

Her main publications are “Shikishima” (Tokyo Photography College, 1973. Reprinted by Zen Foto Gallery in 2014), “vent calmoso” (Sokyu-sha, 2005), “Existence 1968-69” (graficamag, 2011), “Eternal Chase” (graficamag, 2012), “Kittenish...” (Zen Foto Gallery, 2015), “My Journey” (Zen Foto Gallery, 2018) and “Voyage” (Zen Foto Gallery, 2019). Her works are included in the collection of M+ museum (Hong Kong).

Publications & Prints