Muga Miyahara, ‘Tokonoma - Sadness’, 2007, Micheko Galerie

About Muga Miyahara

After developing a name for himself in fashion and street photography, Mugo Miyahara started a studio practice, exploring Japanese culture through symbolic juxtapositions of objects and bodies. The artist’s “Tokonoma” series refers to the recessed alcoves common in Japanese homes. Miyahara uses these recessed spaces as a stage for photographs of inanimate objects. Printed as shimmering silver gelatin prints, the crisp images give material form to abstract concepts. A giant black teardrop, for example, symbolizes sadness, and a growth of roots from the ceiling alludes to aging. The influence of Japanese history is particularly palpable in Tokonoma – Fear (2007); three model planes set over wisps of white smoke evoke the nuclear bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

Japanese, b. 1971, Tokyo, Japan