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Kazutoshi Takeuchi Photo Exhibition A Chimerical Garden

Kazutoshi Takeuchi admits to pursuing artistic works that subconsciously make people more environmentally-conscious as they go about their lives. He is slightly different from most photographers because of this dual mindset purposed on art and ecology.

His motif is always some sort of commonplace plant or crop he picked in the wild, grew in the ground or received from a farmer. Through his work, Takeuchi hopes to awaken the viewer to the beauty of the plant kingdom and spur interest in eco-systems, growing and so on.

But, those works are not your ordinary photographs. Your first reaction will be “What on earth is this?” But, the more you gaze at them, the more you recall from your past and the more your imagination takes off. They are unusual photos that everyone will appreciate each in their own way.

The common thread to all of Takeuchi’s works is that they are simple and void of anything extra whatsoever. They are like HAIKUs with the plants themselves providing the seasonal expression. And, the pitch-black format that is so much remindful of mezzotint prints is silent and still like the dark of night.

To produce his work, Takeuchi assiduously takes straightforward analog photos of the motif plants in season. He tries photographing the plants while they still look like they did when in the ground. That is Takeuchi’s way of injecting soul into his work.

His aim is to change how people see and react to the natural world. In fact, nothing would please him more than if someone who saw this exhibition took a longer look at the veggies on his/her plate or tried to spot plants seen in his photos alongside the road on the way to work. Rather than being fixated on his work, Takeuchi wants the viewer to verify things with his/her own eyes.

For this exhibition, all of Takeuchi’s works have been framed in customized frames made of Kiso* cypress and lacquered with Kiso lacquer by skilled artisans. The use of natural materials and traditional techniques makes the frames themselves worth seeing.

*The Kiso is located in Nagano prefecture.

Takeuchi Kazutoshi Profile

Born 1962 in Tokyo and raised in Yokohama. Now lives in Matsumoto, Nagano.
Graduated in art education from Yokohama National University. Completed the master’s program in environmental education at Joetsu University of Education. Currently enrolled in the Department of Arts Policy and Management (Correspondence Course), Musashino Art University.

Pursued photography as a hobby during childhood and began entering photo contests while in middle school. Taught primary and middle school in Nagano Prefecture from 1986-2013, and works as an association employee since 2017. After teaching, he studied under Fujimori Junji (currently the executive director of the photography section of the Nika Exhibition). Now engaged in experimental photography, and travel photography in Japan and overseas. His photos been published in photography magazines and have won many contest prizes.

Selected for participation in the 74th International Photographic Salon.
First solo exhibition at Ricoh Imaging Square, Shinjuku.
Postcard book “Quiet Life - Mono iwanu monotachi” published by ART BOX International.
Special Prize (Photo Contest), Tabuchi Yukio Memorial Awards.

Member of the Japanese Society of Environmental Education.