“The Second Seeing” Ryu Ika

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The Second Seeing
Ryu Ika

OUT OF STOCK

297×223 mm
Color
292 pages
Published by Akaaka
2021

“The title of this collection of photographs, The second seeing, emphasizes that we live within a ‘second seeing’ by way of an internalized other that exists behind the first-level perception. Our lives exist alongside this image we have of ourselves, she asserts, likening people to actors and the world to a stage.[…]

Ryu isn’t satisfied by simply capturing the subject using her camera. Many of the photos taken in Inner Mongolia, where she grew up, Japan and Paris, where she studied, and Egypt, where she travelled, include what appear to be snapshot-like elements-situations encountered unexpectedly, meaningless gestures, subjects with their eyes only half open, and compositions in which the subject is not facing the camera directly. However, it is also true that about half of these photos were taken under circumstances devised by the artist or with interventions by the artist. She also makes edits to the resulting photos, including negative-positive reversal, superimposing images that have been made transparent, and emphasizing noise or particular details. In this way, it almost seems as if she is presenting a profusion of image manipulations at this show.It is an ambivalent mix formed from a stance torn by two perspectives, one viewing photography as truth, the other seeing it as fiction. On the one hand, elements like flesh and mucous membranes, sweat and blood, and animal carcasses touch on the graphic nature of the world (i.e., the truthfulness of fiction). On the other hand, it captures artificial flowers, paddling pools, artificial turf, and iconic images, lamenting how the world is fake (i.e., the truth of fictitious worlds). The conflict brought about by this strong contrast conveys both a sense of the world’s realness as well as a feeling that things are being manipulated.

Through the text she distributes at the exhibition venue, Ryu drives home like a stake the fact that photos are not completely transparent, and that ‘my’ manipulations that intervene in the process in which photos are taken, edited on the computer, printed on paper, and presented before the viewer are ‘me.’ “I don’t feel like I just reproduced the scenery I took on paper, or “I” am the point that is most important in the process from reality to data and from data to reality…we want to tell the world that we don’t want to ignore the process and we don’t want you to ignore it.” Completely transparent photographs are an impossibility. People live in a world of their own preconceptions. That might sound like an often used cliché. However, Ryu Ika stakes out her resistance to an increasingly fake world, approaching photography in a way that allows her to thoroughly digest the ‘self’ manipulating the photos.”

Extracted from the contribution Iioka Riku (Curatorial Assistant, Mori Art Museum)
“Myself as Resistance-Ryu Ika’s The second seeing”
(By publisher’s description)

“中国内モンゴル出身のRyu Ika は、2019年に第21回写真「1_WALL」グランプリを受賞し、翌年に個展「The Second Seeing」を開催した。
写真プリントとモニターを用いた大胆なインスタレーションは、様々な撮影地や被写体自体を飛び越えたイメージの関連性と律動に満ち、空間全体を劇場に見立て、その世界に充満する視線の中、観者の位置を鋭く問うものだった。

本書は、その展示から発展し、見る人を本という劇場に招き入れる。
マンガ本のような手触りのページをめくるごとに、ユーモアと違和感が綯い交ぜとなった多様な登場人物を見る。反転する表裏やレイヤー、そこからの逸脱を見る。と思えば、不意に差し挟まれた顔の圧に曝され、その視線から逃れられない。登場人物は、時にページの展開の中で互いを見、プリントされ折り畳まれ、目を閉じたり、臓器のように再構成されたりする―。

人は常に見られている。見られていない世界は存在しない。現代社会に張り巡らされる検閲や、見る見られるの関係性、さらにRyu Ikaは、「自分の中で『他人の目』という存在を分裂させて、常にこの自分の中にある『他人の目』に監視されている」とする。「第二の性」に対しての「第二の観察」。人間の有りようを根底から問い、さらにその上に、未知の存在を窺わせる。

故郷内モンゴル、留学先の日本やフランス、旅で出向いたエジプトなど、スナップで蒐集した現実の欠片にノイズをかけたり、出力紙に手を加え、現実からデータ、データから現実を行き来する。その中に打ち込まれる自分の意識を通して、写真を作品化する衝迫に本書は貫かれている。流動し、エネルギーが連関するこの世界という劇場。作家も見る人も、舞台の反射の光に照らされている。”(出版社解説より)