Metamorphosis of Japan after the War (1945-1964)
In the years following the Second World War in Japan, photography played an important role in the development of a new national identity. From the shock of the atomic bomb to the country's re-emergence at the 1964 Olympics in Tokyo, important photographers documented the birth of a new Japanese nation. This exhibition includes 123 photographs, as well as books, magazines and exhibition catalogues featuring works from 11 leading representatives of Japanese photography of these years.
In the mid-1950s a group of photographers came to the fore who started to move away from the sombre photo journalism that depicted the misery of the years immediately following the war. Affiliated with the Vivo photography agency, these photographers examined the consequences of the massive modernisation process that gripped the co...
Japan: a Self-Portrait, Photographs 1945-1964Concept
On August 15th, 1945 the Pacific War came to an end and with it fourteen years of bombings, of deprivation and of great sacrifice for the Japanese people. With the collapse of Japanese militaristic rule and the arrival of the US occupation forces, the nation suddenly found itself thrust into a new and uncertain era. The myth of the Emperor's divinity, which was born during the Meiji era, was replaced with the American attempt at their homegrown brand of democratisation.
The belief in the Emperor and his government, which had accompanied Japan's development for several decades, was shattered. At the same time, despite the surrounding physical destruction, a feeling of intense relief swept across the country accompanied by a thirst for freedom and creative expression. The Japanese people craved discovery: the...