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The Second Stage at GG #28

Atsuko Naganuma: “Winking"

  • DATES : Mon. February 1 - Thu. February 18, 2010
  • HOURS : 12:00p.m.-7:00p.m. (8:30p.m. on Wednesdays)
  • Closed Sundays. Admission free.

Starting February 1st, Guardian Garden will host the 28th exhibition in its series titled “The Second Stage at GG.” The exhibition will feature the creative output of Atsuko Naganuma, who was a finalist in the 19th “Hitotsubo” photography competition in 2002. She received accolades for “Bug Train,” her photographs of scenes shot with a compact digital camera while riding a train. The striking boldness of her angles seemed to suggest that her camera was almost an integral part of her body, and the visuals she created were of an all-new kind, created as though by bugs floating in the air. After her participation in the 2002 competition, Naganuma expanded into photos shot on trains and in cities outside Japan.

In February 2009 Naganuma shifted her base of activities from Tokyo to Kagoshima, where she grew up. The relocation was inspired by a visit she made to Goshiki-numa, a group of volcanic lakes located in Fukushima Prefecture, where she became enthralled by the mysterious power of the natural world. At her new base, her creative focus became the natural features of Kyushu. But rather than glorifying nature itself and aiming to capture definitive moments within the natural realm, Naganuma reacts to that realm’s light and sounds, pointing her lens at the familiar aspects of nature alive around her. From the photographs she takes from myriad angles, we can see how she seeks to respond without artifice to the invisible signs she receives from the natural world. Her upcoming solo exhibition will feature approximately 40 works Naganuma shot in Kagoshima and Miyazaki over the past year.

Message from the Artist

Sakurajima is very active this year, with more than 400 explosive eruptions recorded. They say it’s the largest number since records began in 1985.
It makes me laugh how, in the cities, we speak with eloquence about ecology. There’s nothing soothing about it; Sakurajima reminds me that Mother Earth is home to the gods of destruction and creation.
Before mankind began using words, how was the world connected?
In mythological times, marriage existed between different species. I imagine humans were able to sense the feelings of all the flora and fauna in the natural world.
Here, in this land that makes me aware of the strength of those times, I want to catch the signs given off by the natural world in which I live my stalwart life.
What we see with our eyes isn’t everything; there is definitely something adrift in the air.
If we learn to sense it, surely we might live stronger lives.

Atsuko Naganuma

* “The Second Stage at GG” series originally showcased finalists in the gallery’s “Hitotsubo” open competitions launched in 1992 to promote young creative artists. In 2008 the “Hitotsubo” series came to a close after 30 events encompassing a total of 566 finalists, to be superseded by the “1_WALL” competitions introduced in 2009. “The Second Stage at GG” features finalists from both the “Hitotsubo” and “1_WALL” series who are active in various fields, with a focus on their subsequent creative activities.

Atsuko Naganuma

Born in 1978.

Organizer: Guardian Garden