Masao Yamamoto is inspired by the Japanese philosophy of Zen, and the belief that meditation and the pursuit of beauty play an essential role in the development of human beings. Yamamoto’s philosophical and spiritual roots contribute to his distinctive photographic style, in which the ordinary is revealed as something extraordinary.
Yamamoto’s small-scale photographs, from his earlier series A Box of Ku and Nakazora, are visual haikus that can be displayed as a collection of harmonious objects, or stand alone as individual images. The prints are meditative objects, each image a trigger that encourages the viewer to draw on their own memories and subconscious. While the images are simple and observational, their suggestive nature is what gives them power.
In his newest series, KAWA=FLOW, Yamamoto explores “the world where we are and the world where we go in the future.” The images in this series are a reflection on nature and the relationship between the world and self. Evocative of harmony and contentment, they reflect Yamamoto’s philosophy that respect and humility toward the universe is achieved by uncovering quietude in oneself, a process found only through nature.
Masao Yamamoto’s photographs are included in the collections of the Victoria & Albert Museum, London; the Philadelphia Museum of Art; the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; and International Center of Photography, New York, among others. His monographs include Fujsan, é, Omizuao, Nakazora, and A Box of Ku.
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