Of Japan And Chicago: Street Photographs by Ken Bloom and Yasuhiro Ishimoto

We are pleased to announce our new exhibition, Of Japan And Chicago: Street Photographs by Ken Bloom and Yasuhiro Ishimoto, on display both online and in our gallery.

On view are photographs taken by Ken Bloom while he lived in Japan from 1976-79. Bloom portrayed the streets of Tokyo and towns south of the city, documenting the public lives of the people during a particularly precious era, postwar Japan before the great economic boom of the 1980s. This was the threshold of a major cultural change, before the digital revolution, tall buildings and huge influxes of money.  Bloom’s work as a correspondent for American Photographer magazine connected him with major artists of the Japanese photographic world such as Shomei Tomatsu, Araki and Miyako Ishiuchi, for whom he wrote an introduction to her first book. Each had considerable influence on his developing sense of vision.

Complimenting these photos are a suite of images by Japanese/American photographer, Yasuhiro Ishimoto, made during various stints in Chicago in the 1950s and 60s. Ishimoto’s work was informed by a complicated, dual perspective: Born in San Francisco, he was raised in Japan and spent much of his early adult life in the U.S.  His seemingly straightforward photographs are filled with nuance and observations that only someone with his singular viewpoint could craft. Ishimoto’s approach to photography is unique in its combination of Western modernism and Japanese formalism and attention to subtle beauty.