Akihito Yoshida Photo Exhibition celebrating the publishing of “The Absence of Two” by Seigensha & Xavier Barral Dec 8 — Dec 23
In celebration of the publishing of the photobook “The Absence of Two” traders edition by Akihito Yoshida, RPS hosts his photo exhibition. Yoshida designed this book through the workshop “Photobook as Object” hosted by RPS in 2016, and the artist’s handmade edition was published in June 2017.
The handmade edition of 111 copies was quickly sold out, and now the trade editions based on his original edition will be published from Seigensha and a French publisher, Editions Xavier Barral. The trade edition has been newly edited and some images and an essay have been added.
In this exhibition “The Absence of Two,” the materials that are not usually be seen such as text prints, dummy books and documents will also be presented, in order to show how the photographer developed the original book into the trader’s edition. For a change from his presentation in August 2017, this exhibition will focus on the process of making a “book.” We are looking forward to seeing you.
Exhibition dates: Dec 8, 2018 (Sat) — Dec 23 (Sun)
Open daily, 13:00 — 19:00, Entry free for the exhibition except for the artist talk.
Reception and artist talk
Dec 8, 2017 (Sat) from 18:00, Entry 500 Yen
With snacks and drinks
Location: Reminders Photography Stronghold Gallery
Higashi-Mukoujima 2-38-5, Sumida-ku, Tokyo
(6 min walk from Hikifune Station, Tobu Skytree Line, or, 5 min walk from Hikifune Station, Keisei Line)
【Now accepting orders of special RPS edition with a complimentary print】
Prior to the publishing of the photobook, RPS is accepting orders of special edition with a complimentary print. The estimated shipping date starts from December 8th and onward.
The Absence of Two (Seigensha edition)
◎ with an essay (English and Japanese)
◎ Size: height 257 mm x width 182 mm
◎ Codex binding
◎ RPS offering: All copies will be signed, with an original print on the paper (Biotope) which was used for the original handmade edition published last year. The photographer will pick one image out of three, and each print will be numbered and signed. Size: A5
The Absence of Two
The town kunitomi is located Miyazaki Prefecture in Kyushu Japan. This small and peaceful rural town with its field is where my grandmother, who was born in 1928, and my cousin Daiki, who was born in 1980, lived together. On behalf of his busy parents, my grandmother carefully raised and took care of Daiki from the time he was a child, living with him in the same house, eating and sleeping in the same room together.
“I attended his elementary school entrance ceremony, you know. All the other children’s mothers were young, and I’m sure Daiki wasn’t happy with being the only one who’s grandma showed up. I bet the teachers also wondered why his grandma had come” So my grandmother said one day, as she showed me a photo album. It contained photographs of many memorable moments, from his Shichi-Go-San celebration and elementary school entrance ceremony to his sports day. The album was like one that could be found in any home, the only slight difference being that my grandmother appeared along with Daiki in the pictures. For my grandmother, Daiki was no doubt a treasure that had been entrusted to her during the late years of her life. Ever time I visited my grandmother’s house, she told me various stories about Daiki. Always sitting next to her on these occasions was a young Daiki, with a beaming smile on his face. Meanwhile, for Daiki, my grandmother must have been the very “place where he belonged.” Their time together over many years gave birth to a bond that transcended the usual relationship between “grandmother” and “grandchild”- a strong sense of and trust flowed within both of them. One Daiki mentioned to me.
“Since I grew up showered by grandma’s affection, I think it’s natural that I take care of her until she dies.”
True to his words, Daiki remained by my grandmother’s side ever after becoming a student at a nursing university, continuing to live with her and fully devoting himself to her care. Until I began photographing them, I had observed their small everyday world as nothing out of the ordinary. The image of Daiki off to university. The image of the two of them relaxing on the floor, chatting about small things. Now, however, every time I look at the images I continued to document of the two thought my lens, as both a family member and a photographer, these seemingly ordinary scenes appear as a precious moment. This story was supposed to come to an end with my grandmother’s death, which would no doubt come in the not-so-distant future. However, it unexpectedly ended in a different way.
“I wonder where he’s gone to? He went out on his motorbike and hasn’t been back since”
At the end of February in 2014, Daiki suddenly went missing. There being nothing she could do, my grandmother just stood in front of the window and kept waiting for Daiki to return home. Almost a year passed without any word of his whereabouts, until one day Daiki’s body was found in the anything behind and had brought an end to the 23 years of his life. As if following in his footsteps, in the following year my grandmother passed away. The last things that remained were countless photographs of the two and their life together, all the time needed each other, supporting each other, and caring for each other. Thought there photographs, which capture images of his small everyday life in this rural town, I try to reach out to them, and to engage in a dialogue with them once again.
– Akihito Yoshida