One of the most significant contributions to the art of photography comes from postwar Japan. After World War II, the country began to produce film and camera equipment, supporting a large amateur photography culture and sponsoring native photographers as important artistic producers. This exhibition highlights SFMOMA’s considerable collection of Japanese photography, focusing on generous gifts from our community and the important donation of the Kurenboh Collection, Tokyo. Japanese Photography from Postwar to Now includes photographs from the 1960s, when major figures such as Shomei Tomatsu and Daido Moriyama investigated Americanization and industrial growth; the more personal and performative work of Nobuyoshi Araki and Eikoh Hosoe; and photography addressing the present culture and the Fukushima nuclear disaster. Organized thematically, the show explores topics such as Japan’s relationship with America, changes in the city and countryside, and the emergence of women, especially Miyako Ishiuchi, Rinko Kawauchi, and Lieko Shiga, as significant contributors to contemporary Japanese photography.
Major support for Japanese Photography from Postwar to Now is provided by Lisa and John Pritzker. Additional support is provided by the E. Rhodes and Leona B. Carpenter Foundation and the Japan Foundation.