A Turkish Photographer Mines the Dark Side of Anime-Inspired Harajuku Style
The subjects of
Hakan, who hails from Istanbul but now lives and works in Miami, treads the line between
In his recent body of work, Hakan explores a fascination with Asian cinema and culture. Works like those in the series “Love Triangles & Its Confusing Complications” (2013) bring the noir-inspired lighting and jewel-toned palette of Hong-Kong films like Wong Kar-Wai’s In the Mood for Love into the space of photography. Other images offer a glimpse into the flamboyant world of Japanese fashion. In Fashion Is Image and The Minds of the Mads VII (both 2009), Hakan appropriates Tokyo’s famed fairy tale and anime-inspired Harajuku style, presenting heavily made-up models adorned with toys, flowers, or S&M-style corsets. These women are unsmiling as they confront the viewer, raising the question: is this decoration merely a dramatic facade, or is Hakan’s work a critique of deeper cultural conditions?