More in zkop: a blessing in disguise
First Thursdays Exhibitionzkop: a blessing in disguise

zkop: a blessing in disguise

Yamamoto Keiko Rochaix

12 January - 15 March

Yamamoto Keiko Rochaix is pleased to present the first showing in the UK of works of Ryuichi Ishikawa, an emerging talent in photography. ‘zkop: a blessing in disguise’, curated from ‘Okinawan Portraits’ and ‘A Grand Polyphony’, two publications which propelled the young artist into almost instant fame in Japan and won him prestigious Kimura Ihei Award in 2015.

Universal appeal of Ishikawa’s works lies in the power of image; straightforward, no-nonsense capturing of a real, tangible sections of today’s society. They are a powerful reminder of potential of a single raw image. This in turn is a reflection of artist’s words; ‘Reality is always excessive’ (post script by the artist, ‘A Grand Polyphony’). Every image in the show, each of which is a snapshot of a reality, is loaded with emotion, drama, sometimes simply of being, or not being.

Ishikawa photographes nonchalant daily life in Okinawa, the semi-tropical small archipelago far removed from the main islands of Japan, and which was reduced to accept marginal positions the national central power forced upon over centuries. The sense of contained tension, even unbearableness and perpetual rebellious spirit which Ishikawa’s Okinawa emits may have roots in such unique history. Nonetheless, it is never of an abysmal desperation; Ishikawa’s Okinawa is of hope. It may be that the artist’s unspoken empathy and tenderness to his fellow islanders and to the islands are reflected and translated in the image as unfathomable affection and hope.

Nevertheless, once again, when facing his image, geographical footnote becomes irrelevant as its explosive emotion of ‘excessive reality’ takes over. And this is the decisive universal appeal of Ishikawa’s work.


Yamamoto Keiko Rochaix
19 Goulston Street
W1 7TP

Getting to: Yamamoto Keiko Rochaix

3 minute walk from either Aldgate East or Aldgate Tube Station. 9 minute walk from Liverpool Street Tube Station.
Nearest tube / overground-Aldgate East, Aldgate, Liverpool Street
Bus Routes- 25, 40, 42, 67, 78, 100, 115, 135, 205, 254, N205, N253, N550, N551
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