"Figures" (2023)



"Figures" (2020)
This work consists of photographs taken at a warehouse party in Amsterdam in 2014. Departing from the premise of the camera as an extension of the body, Kono took photographs in the pitch-dark venue from overhead without looking through a viewfinder, using a powerful flash and the optical zoom of his digital camera to its maximum extent. Several years passed without looking back at those photographs, and he discovered them in his own HDD archives by accident. Those photographs, which are records of what the camera saw, not with Kono's eyes, were something different from his experience or memory and appeared to him as scenes he had never seen.

Early in 2019, Kono self-published a photo zine containing these photographs, but the pandemic of COVID-19 has given it different perspectives. He originally had planned to exhibit the new body of work, "The Cliff", he was working on at that time, but changed his plan suddenly to create an installation piece of this body of work. In Japan at the time, the government urged people to avoid the "three Cs": closed spaces, crowded locations, and close-contact situations, which increased the risk of infection. Kono, however, exhibited this work in a small room with the lights entirely dimmed and the windows and entrances curtained off, so that the work could only be viewed for a brief moment when two strobes flashed at different intervals. Afterimages were left in their retinas despite the fact that photographs were scarcely discernible. It was an attempt to reconsider the meaning of gathering and the state of "closeness" that everyone has suddenly become aware of, whether they want to or not in that extreme environment, rather than showing pictures themselves, and to examine how "coexistence" with others is possible in an age where all boundaries have become visible.

 Installation view from the exhibition “Figures” at IACK, Kanazawa 2020

2020年6月13日(土)- 8月2日(日)
IACK, Kanazawa

「可視化される境界 - あるいはコロナ渦における写真表現について」