The Photography Of Moriyama Daidō

In Buruma writes: ‘Most people can come up with a decent photograph once in a while, which will look like millions of other photographs. Only the greatest photographers can be easily identified by a unique personal style. Moriyama is one of them. There are some recurring images, in different settings, in color and black-and-white, many of which appear in the three books under review: the grainy close-up of a torn pornographic film poster on a peeling wall; a woman’s legs in mesh tights picked out in a crowded street; a filth-strewn back alley crisscrossed with electric wires; a blown-up newspaper photograph; net curtains in a cheap hotel room; a dilapidated old bar with broken neon lights. Moriyama has an exact eye for the textures of urban life, often decaying, ephemeral, sadly alluring in their temporary shine. In his photographs even inanimate objects, such as pipelines or motorcycle engines, have a vaguely anthropomorphic air about them; they look sexy.’

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