In celebrating Malaysia’s 50th Year of Independence and the 50th Year of diplomatic relations between Malaysia and Japan, The Japan Foundation, Kuala Lumpur and The Annexe, Central Market is presenting the photography exhibition. The works by the Japanese artists are part of a touring exhibition titled “Counter-Photography”, curated to present 11 noted Japanese photographers: Eikoh Hosoe, Hiroshi Sugimoto, Miho Akioka, Miyuki Ichikawa, Akiko Sugiyama, Chie Yasuda, Kazuo Katase, Hiroko Inoue, Tomoko Yoneda, Tomoaki Ishihara, Michihiro Shimabuku. The exhibition is curated by Yuri Mitsuka, curator of the Shoto Museum of Art. The Annexe, Central Market saw this as an opportunity to share its new gallery and present the works of Malaysian contemporary photographers alongside with the Japanese photographers. The Malaysian photographers are: Bernice Chauly, Sharon Lam, Tan Chee Hon, Caecar Chong, Nazim Esa, Minstrel Kuik, Eiffel Chong and Pang Khee Teik (who as Arts Programme Director of The Annexe, Central Market, is also the curator of this exhibition). The works presented by the Malaysian photographers are new and half of them are being produced specifically for this exhibition.
Reality, Spirituality & Artifice - The curator for the Japanese photographs wrote: “Photography is generally known as a medium that accurately records reality. In fact, however, its unparalleled ability to faithfully reproduce reality can also be put to exactly the opposite effect. This characteristic of photography has given rise to the desire to reveal objects that cannot be seen with the naked eye – in other words, to photograph the invisible world.”
Thus, based on the idea “to reveal the reality behind the visible,” the exhibition presents works by Japanese photographers who are attempting to express the value in things that are not yet visible or concealed in material reality in an era in which a spiritual foundation has been lost.
As most of the Malaysian works are still being made at the time of this press release, it is not yet possible to discern their collective motivations. While some are similarly invested in the spiritual aspects of photography, others are more concerned with what the plain visible world reveals about us. Whether capturing the construction of our manmade landscapes or the constructs of our minds, their photographs reveal both the artifice as well as the pathos behind our reality. In resisting conventional pictorial aesthetics, the Malaysian photographers in this exhibition aim to give us insights into our various realities.
This exhibition gives us an opportunity to understand the spirit of each other’s contemporary art. In their own ways, the Japanese and Malaysian photographers reveal the reality behind the invisible world as well as the artifice of our visible world. In sharing a space, the photographers invite us also into both the visible and invisible spaces they have captured and by doing so, enlarge the realm which we inhabit.
Exhibition will be opened by Wairah Marzuki, NAG Chairman of Board of Trustees on Thu 12 July 2007, 8pm. Exhibition date & hour - Thu 12 – Sun 29, July 2007, 11am – 8pm, at The Gallery, 2nd Floor, The Annexe, Central Market, KL