Tuesday, January 22, 2013

One Moment

Satoki Nagata's photographs capture a moment. Yes, technically all photographs do, but Nagata's photos do so differently. His photos are a snapshot into someone's routine--one second, one glance, one movement. He captures his subject's attention in a moment of utter boredom, frustration, desperation, hope. His photos provide a glimpse into other people's lives--a single moment in the life of men, women, and children that communicates the reality of their circumstances.

You see sadness in a woman's downcast gaze. You see exhaustion in a young man's parted lips and squinted eyes. You see boredom in an unknown woman's tapping fingers. You see longing in the young girl gripping the shades peering outside, light shining on her disappointed features.

In an interview posted on "The Leica Camera Blog" Nagata explains his photos:

"My goal as an artist is finding and showing the various connections forming the reality in which the city and its people exist. The camera captures the moment in a fraction of a second, and I have found that images that succeed show the multi-dimensional relationship of the world through symbolic and abstract forms. By searching for the elements that represent the reality I see around me, I can capture them through the photographic medium. I am always trying to create intimate bonds with my subjects while photographing them, and I believe this is the only way to show their reality and their relationships to the world. Through these images I hope you will discover these subtle but substantial links, and feel a connection to the world I document."

He succeeds. His photos provide a brief connection and relationship with his subjects. For a moment, you know them. You understand that woman's sadness. You feel that man's exhaustion, as if it pulsed through your own body. You know that unknown woman's boredom. For a moment, you are that young girl longing to venture outside into the fresh and open air, knowing you must stay trapped inside. For one moment, you forget your own life, and experience the reality of someone else's.

Here is a link to more of Nagata's photos: http://www.satoki.com/

1 comment:

  1. These pictures are incredible. So first of all, thank you for posting them, I'm definitely going to check out more of Nagata's work. Secondly, your critique of them read like poetry. How much you care about these photos was evident and as someone who doesn't really "get" photography or what constitutes a good photo beyond the superficial, you really made me experience the pieces, which for me, as a proponent of moving images, is quite a feat. I'm so glad you included part of the interview so I could get the artist's perspective too; it served as a nice parallel to your own thoughts. Lovely.