Zen Foto Gallery is pleased to present Asakusa — Ode to Edo, Ronin de Goede’s photography exhibition from September 29 to October 21, 2023. Asakusa is a photographic diary of the golden days the Dutch artist spent with the Japanese master tattoo artist Horikazu. Ronin first encountered Japanese tattoos online and became fascinated with Wabori, traditional Japanese tattooing. When Ronin visited Japan in 2011, he knocked on the door of the renowned tattooist Horikazu Shodai, but was disappointed to hear that he was ill in bed. He became friends with his successor Horikazu Waka, and in 2016, Ronin began assisting and taking photographs of Horikazu’s work and him working. For this exhibition, Zen Foto Gallery will present a selection of works from the photobook Asakusa, which was published in 2020, as well as new works made after the release of the publication.

"I am interested in traditional Japanese tattooing for different reasons. There’s the spiritual meaning, the quality of tebori, and the ablance of the artwork as a whole in regards to the physique of the individual “wearing” it — It reflects both their culture and individualism at the same time. "

— Ronin de Goede, August 2023

Artist Profile

Ronin de GOEDE

Ronin (1978, The Netherlands) is inspired by both the every day and the ephemeral. The ability to see in shades of grey allows him to focus on light and shadow, textures, shapes and expressions, bringing his studies in graphic design, fine art and painting at the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in the Hague into play. His camera of choice is an analogue black Leica MP loaded with Kodak 400 Tri-X, which he received in exchange for a collection of war memorabilia he and some friends had scavenged from the ruins of the Atlantic wall, the coastal fortifications built by Germany between 1942 and 1944 along the coast of continental Europe and Scandinavia. Eschewing digital photography and printing, he makes his own distinctive hand-made silver gelatine prints in a darkroom nestled in woodlands close to the Hague. Whether beneath this leafy shade or among the shadows crisscrossing the sunstroked streets of Asakusa, ronin slips with ease from clogs to kimono, and can sometimes be spotted wearing both.

Publications & Prints