top コラムExhibition Report14 "LIFE Ⅲ -Days with pictures" 「LIFE −写真のある生活 Ⅲ」

Exhibition Report

14 "LIFE Ⅲ -Days with pictures" 「LIFE −写真のある生活 Ⅲ」

John Sypal

Tucked away on a steeply sloping side street a few dozen meters from Kanda Myojin shrine’s colorful main gate sits Gallery Bauhaus.

This stately concrete building is a unique photographic venue with an interior that’s both elegant and intimate. Upon paying the entry fee (800 yen) you enter what feels like a gallery but also the well-decorated home of someone with an eye for design and impressive
photography collection.


Gallery Bauhaus was founded in 2006 by acclaimed photographer Tatsuro Kotaki as a space where genuine, original prints could be experienced in person.  He has produced over eighty exhibitions here, including several generous ones with work by Robert Frank. The collection of
pictures in his two-part Robert Frank retrospective in 2020 would have been the envy of any photography museum in the world.


The current show is the third installment in a series straightforwardly titled “Life”.  Its official title is “Life III, Days with Pictures”.

The roster of the twenty-eight included artists looks like it came from a photography class syllabus:


Akira Yoshimura Alao Yokogi August Sander Bruce Davidson Chotoku Tanaka Deborah Parkin  Edward Weston Eugene Smith Germaine Krull Harry Callahan Hiroshi Sugimoto Ikko Narahara  Irina Ionesco Izis Josef Sudek Jun Morinaga Keiichi Tahara Kiyoji Otsuji Kiyoshi Suzuki  Mieko Tadokoro Miloslav Kubes Nobuyoshi Araki Noriaki Yokosuka Robert Doisneau Robert Frank  Taishi Hirokawa Tatsuo Kotaki Yasuhiro Ishimoto


Each photographer deals with life on their own terms, in their own style. For some artists, a single print is presented. For others, a few.

Each and every image has its own beauty, and each needs to be seen as intended- face to (print) face. Kotaki seems drawn to moments of sometimes surreal, simple beauty- evocative images, exquisitely printed. As far as the show goes as a whole, there is no premediated story, no political pretense to the selection of prints chosen.


“Life” is enough. What else is there?


We go about our contemporary lives constantly exposed to images- we have Days with Pictures from the moment we wake up. Many of these pictures are experienced through the glowing rectangles in our palms.
The smartphone screen- that democratizer of images- is a backlit window which applies a reductive equality to every picture it shows.
In it we’re shown pictures of pictures- pixels of pictures, suggestions of something greater which we shrug and accept as real as scroll past.


It’s not to say that the prints in this are more “real”- they are photographs, after all. But these photographs are also prints- a tangible sort of reality. Fragile, yes. But not dependent on electricity or screens. Each, like the photographer which made them, and the viewers who experience them, have their own individuality. Their own lives. There’s something to enjoy about each, upon inspection.

In this show is an 8x10 contact print by Edward Weston. It’s of an ancient, wind-swept cedar on a hill in the sun.  The image possesses a crispness, a tonality- a completeness- that is enough to shock you awake.  It transcends trees, or color, or ideas into a form- a picture- an invitation for a chance to truly see.


I’ve never experienced this sensation with an image on a screen. Only prints- and books- seem to have this power.  For me, anyway. This is what photography can be, if we want to remember how it was. This is what photography can be, if we let it.

With sincerity and generosity, Tatsuro Kotaki has provided us an opportunity to see, to feel.


神田明神の色鮮やかな正門から数十メートル、急な坂道を登った脇道にあるのがgallery bauhaus(バウハウス)です。





gallery bauhausは、写真家・小瀧達郎氏が、本物のオリジナルプリントを体験できる空間として、2006年に設立したものです。

2020年に開催されたロバート・フランクの2回にわたる回顧展の写真コレクションは、世界中の写真美術館が羨むほどのものだったでしょう。gallery bauhausは東京の宝です。



正式名称は「Life III, Days with Pictures」。




アウグスト・ザンダー 荒木経惟 イジス 石元泰博 イリナ・イオネスコ 

エドワード・ウエストン 大辻清司 小瀧達郎  ジェルメーヌ・クルル
杉本博司 鈴木清 田所美惠子 田中長徳 田原桂一 デボラ・パーキン

奈良原一高 ハリー・キャラハン 広川泰士 ブルース・デヴィッドソン 

ミロスラフ・クベシュ 森永純 ユージン・スミス 横木安良夫 横須賀功光

吉村朗 ヨゼフ・スデク ロバート・フランク ロベール・ドアノー



























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