Osamu Shiihara

Japanese, 1905-1975

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Osamu Shiihara

Japanese, 1905-1975

Biography

One of Japan’s earliest Modernists, Osamu Shiihara created a large body of experimental photography, employing methods such as photogram solarization and a combination of drawing and photography he called “photo peinture” (photo painting). Primarily working in a realist mode, he turned the fixed and central gaze of the documentary photographer to surreal and inscrutable arrangements of objects against stark, vaguely urban backdrops. These imaginative juxtapositions, alongside his experimental methods, were reflective of Shiihara’s aim to use the camera to find new modes of artistic expression. Shiihara was fully submerged in the new urban lifestyle of postwar Japan, and is perhaps best known for his nude photography.

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Career Highlights
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Group show at a major institution
The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA)
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Collected by a major institution
Museum of Modern Art (MoMA)
Biography

One of Japan’s earliest Modernists, Osamu Shiihara created a large body of experimental photography, employing methods such as photogram solarization and a combination of drawing and photography he called “photo peinture” (photo painting). Primarily working in a realist mode, he turned the fixed and central gaze of the documentary photographer to surreal and inscrutable arrangements of objects against stark, vaguely urban backdrops. These imaginative juxtapositions, alongside his experimental methods, were reflective of Shiihara’s aim to use the camera to find new modes of artistic expression. Shiihara was fully submerged in the new urban lifestyle of postwar Japan, and is perhaps best known for his nude photography.

Career Highlights
Learn more about artist insights.
group
Group show at a major institution
The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA)
Instituion
Collected by a major institution
Museum of Modern Art (MoMA)