Ahn Sehong’s photos and Nikon (yet again)

Yesterday I had half an hour to kill in Nishi-Shinjuku and decided to go again to Ahn Sehong (安世鴻, 안세홍)’s show 重重 (Layer by Layer, 겹겹, Gyeobgyeob, Jūjū).

There were fewer security guards this time, but instead of (very politely) going over visitors with a metal detector, they now (very politely) asked these to put baggage and the like to the side, and to walk through an airport-style security gate. This device pleasantly added to the general surrealism of the whole affair. Fewer visitors this time than last, but still a lot for a show at Nikon during working hours on a weekday.

Not only the uniformed people were extraordinarily polite, all were. The Nikon staff in particular seemed alert to the slightest possibility that they might be in my way, deftly stepping aside when I even started to approach. At least one of them magically combined this with an impression that he was avoiding looking in my direction. Extraordinary peripheral vision there.

And so the Nikon staff helped me concentrate more on the photos than I could the previous time. The best of these are good, but I was less satisfied with some others. It’s just that they don’t all have much visual interest. As for other interest, there’s probably plenty — but because there are no captions, one can only guess. Or one can’t — yes, I see (for example) that a lady is holding what I suppose is a Chinese ID card; but I can’t make out what’s written on it, and don’t know what other significance it may have.

I hope that an informative booklet eventually comes out of this work. (There’s already a modest brochure.)

The news today is that the Tokyo District Court turned down Nikon’s appeal against its provisional ruling and instead ruled that the exhibition should go ahead as planned (Asahi [at WebCite], Mainichi [at WebCite]).

All the best to Ahn and, despite its recent aberration, my thanks to Nikon for mounting shows such as this.


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