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Tokyo Travel Guide

Conversation with Photographer Daido Moriyama

Posted: Oct. 24th, 2012  |  By Michael Pearse
Photo Courtesy Daido Moriyama

Abstracted photography is somewhat of an oxymoron as photos are literal representations of the real world. However, Daido Moriyama, a photographer from Tokyo who did most of his shots in the 60s and 70s, edges on abstract art in a way that's even more surprising considering his work was done long before photo touchups via computers.

Wedged behind the neon towers of Shinjuku, Tokyo’s most infamous entertainment district, is a network of ramshackle lanes with shoebox-size bars packed two or three storeys high, a relic of pre-war Tokyo that has somehow survived the city’s relentless redevelopment. This is Golden Gai, where during the creative and political turmoil of the Sixties, artists, writers and photographers rubbed shoulders with gangsters, prostitutes and nightclub entertainers. Entering one of the dimly lit dives, I squeeze past the bombed-out regulars, heading for a tiny wooden staircase at the back. While the area has become something of a tourist sight in recent years, my guidebook recommends against entering these establishments...


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