Hiroshi Sugimoto, ‘Ionian Sea - Santa Cesarea’, 1993, Ben Brown Fine Arts

About Hiroshi Sugimoto

To craft his exquisite black-and-white images, Hiroshi Sugimoto uses a 19th-century-style, large-format camera, exploring his idea of photography as a method for preserving and modeling time. “Endeavors in art are…mere approximations, efforts to render visible unseen realms,” he says. Influenced by Surrealism and Dada, Sugimoto's work is intimately connected to Marcel Duchamp, as in his series "Conceptual Forms" (2004), (inspired by Duchamp's The Large Glass, 1923), large-scale black-and-white photographs of mathematical models and tools. Ongoing subjects include dioramas, theaters, Buddhist sculptures, and seascapes—the latter captured in a famous series of near-abstractions, coupled with specific geographic titles. A supreme craftsman, Sugimoto often varies the length of exposure to achieve tonal richness, as in “Joe” (2006), photographs of Richard Serra’s works that function as visual memories more than documentation. “I imagine my vision then try to make it happen, just like painting,” he says. “The reality is there, but how to make it like my reality.”

Japanese, b. 1948, Tokyo, Japan, based in New York, New York