Masterclass Kurokawa Collection: Kajima Seibei and the End of Yokohama Photography

  • Data:
  • Locatie: SieboldHuis
  • Rapenburg 19

In deze (Engelstalige) Master Class over de Kurokawa Collectie waarin u meegenomen wordt naar het einde van de 19e eeuw, zal gastconservator Sebastian Dobson vertellen over het leven van fotograaf Kajima Seibei en het einde van de Yokohama Fotografie.

Kajima Seibei (1866-1924) is one of the most fascinating figures in nineteenth-century Japanese photography. Independently wealthy and extremely well connected, the so-called ‘photographic magnate (shashin daijin)’ dominated the photographic scene in Japan for most of the 1890s, and, despite his self-claimed amateur status, was the moving force behind the Genrokukan Studio, one of the most ambitious enterprises of its kind and, in its day, the most commercially successful studio in Tokyo. By 1899, however, Kajima’s career was in free fall, and after a series of personal misfortunes and professional setbacks he withdrew from photography altogether, spending the remainder of his life in genteel poverty as a performer in the Noh theatre.

Historians have hitherto regarded Kajima as something of an anomaly in the history of Japanese photography, with most commentators taking his self-claimed title of ‘King of Amateur Photographers’ at face value. In this lecture, I will suggest that, at the height of his fame in the 1890s, Kajima occupied a more nuanced, Janus-like, position in Japanese photographic history, with his divided gaze looking back to the practices of the market in souvenir photography that had developed in Yokohama since the 1860s while simultaneously looking ahead to the possibilities offered by the latest advances in photographic technology in the following century.

Meer informatie: SieboldHuis