Verdex
Verdex
16 September 2022, 00:00

Experimental photograms of Sutezo Otono, Tampei club member

Experimental photograms of Sutezo Otono, Tampei club member
In 1930, the Tampei Photography Club was founded in Japan, whose members initially promoted avant-garde art to the masses, and then changed course to social photography. The founders of the circle were Terushichi Hirai, Koro Honjo and Toru Kono. The first exhibition organized by Tampei participants took place in 1931, but it remained almost invisible in history against the backdrop of the 1932 exhibition, where the most daring experimental works were presented to the public. The club existed until the Second World War and was closed in 1941.
One of Tampei's members was Sutezō Otono, who joined the group in 1934. The photographer was born in Osaka in 1905, after graduating from high school he got a job in a bank. According to Tokyo Metropolitan Museum of Art curator Akiko Okatsuka, Sutezo Otono stood out from other photographers by turning to the photogram technique.
You can get a photogram by photochemical means, without using a camera. The light of the lamp is directed at the object in such a way that the shadow from it falls on the photographic paper. Opaque elements appear as light silhouettes. This technique was used by the French artist Man Ray and the Hungarian avant-garde artist Laszlo Moholy-Nagy. With her help, they moved from reality and literalism to non-objectivity.
Sutezo Otono devoted several articles to the photogram published in Japanese photo magazines. In his work, he used household items and leaves, which he carefully placed on photographic paper. By carefully studying each work and exploring the technique step by step, the artist perfected the individual style of creating images. His work has been featured at the Paris Photo International Exhibition and is included in the permanent collection of the New Orleans Museum of Art.

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