KG+ 2024

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Hana Sawada, Hiroshi Tanihira

showcase#12 "Whereabouts of photographic reality" curated by minoru shimizu

showcase #12 curated by Minoru Shimizu Whereabouts of photographic reality The 12th Showcase 2024 features Hiroshi Tanihira (b.1982, first appearance) whose surprisingly detailed and dense graphite drawings have attracted attention, and Hana Sawada (b.1990, second apperance since 2018) who, since her Canon New Century of Photography Award 2017(specially mentioned by Sandra Phillips), has been active in a number of exhibitions. In Tanihira’s works a shermanictic figure is drawn in finest hard-edge lines with extreme richness of details. Since its emergence photography has visualized the invisible one after another, such as photographs of farthest nature and universe, as scientific or sport photographs capturing the one-thousandth instant, or those of ectoplasms and ghosts. In the end we could say, that the “reality” we know, be it visible or invisible, has come to consist of nothing but ordinary photographs. Reality is phoptographic! You would not call it “real” unless I draw it in exactly photographic style … this was/is an ironical core of the Superrealism which firstly emerged in the 1970’s and is still found in popular media such as YouTube. Contrary to this, Tanihira’s pencil pursues something un-photographable, something that must lie beyond the photographic “reality”. Therefore the essence of his works, the beautiful gray shine expressed in extremly fine, almost engraved lines, cannot be photographed. Please do not fail to look at the originals. Now, a photograph is always a photograph of “something”, that is, the referent of photography, which has been regarded as something real outside of photography. The objects of Sawada’s works are digital images found in the internet. These are all digitally scanned, sotospeak vacuum-packed images. Did/Does such ”something” really exist, though? Here the artist tries to trace them back to their referents, which have once existed in reality, as she cuts the packed images open, uses digital methods and reconstructs the flattened images to three-dimensional objects. It is not that Sawada would believe in “something”’s real existence. In her playful manipulations and humorous deployments of images, she rather expresses a kind of reality of recent digital images, which have totally broken with reality that has ever been. April, 2024. Minoru Shimizu

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