The Japanese-born photographer Kumi Oguro, who lives and works in Antwerp, Belgium, talks during her interview about the central message of her artistic work.
Hem, 2018 © Kumi Oguro
Please describe the core theme and the central message of your work.
I create staged photographs, mainly with female models. I would not call them “dream-like”, but there is a similarity with our waking dreams, in the sense that it’s hard to describe what is going on in my images. There is no story or logical flow.
They might evoke your imagination: What has happened? What is going to come? Is this eternity?
I studied film, thought and wrote about the relationship between moving image and still image. It made me, and still makes me think often about the “time” element in my photographs.
Another important element is, what you don’t see in the image, but what is suggested. In many of my images, only a part of the body (hair, legs, arms…) is visible.
Introduce us to the work that, in your view, exemplifies or best embodies the message of your work.
I often choose not to (fully) show the face of the models. Arms, legs or tufts of hair could be much more expressive. No one, including myself, can tell what these female figures, or rather creatures, are doing.
Division, 2014 © Kumi Oguro
What is the aim of your art, your work, what is it supposed to achieve in the viewer?
My first book is called NOISE. In my image, there is something subtly disturbing, but you cannot really grasp what it is, just like a badly tuned radio. When you think you might catch something recognisable, it shifts into noise again, making you more curious.
The publication of the book is back in 2008, followed by a couple of exhibitions with the same title. At certain point, I had enough of that word “noise” and pushed it away from my mind. However, I still find myself keep returning to this idea. It is always there at the core of my work. It might change its shape, but it keeps buzzing in my ear. And that of the viewers probably.
THE DEED | DAS WERK is a complementary and separately presented part of THE INTERVIEW IN|DEEDS with Kumi Oguro.
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