Japanese Lesson

Japanese Lesson

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Katja Stuke & Oliver Sieber
Japanese Lesson

Artist Book, 2017
1260 pages, 20 x 28 x 6,5 cm
colour digital print
Includes 13 drawing, carbon paper and a glossary.
Ed. of #5 + 5 AP


Since 2005 we have been traveling to Japan, working on topics like subculture, music, surveillance and more. Since 2011 we are developing the Japanese Lesson.  At the beginning it was a projection including our own photographs from the first years  — juxtaposed with found footage: images and drawing from mangas and animes, still images from japanese movies, historical and current photographs – things that interested us at that time. At the moment the Lesson can be: different versions of exhibitions, different zines or publications each with a different focus; or maybe a sound installation in the future—who knows. (Our main understanding of  the Japanese Lesson: it’s things we learn about Japan and hopefully can pass on to others. It will continue – this recent book is not the final or only result.
In the last years (after Fukushima) we met artists and activist,  became friends — and through them we understood more and more about Japanese society and history, we joined rallies and protests . (Tokyo No hate, 68 pages, 19 x 27 cm, black and white Xerox print).
For the extensive new book Japanese Lesson we took photographs while walking around certain neighborhoods in Osaka and Tokyo which still have to deal with prejudice and discrimination because of severyl (historic and present) reasons. While walking around these areas we where thinking and discussing topics like ‚political landscapes’, ‚borders‘ how a neighborhood can define your identity, ‚who owns the cities’ … and more.
We also walked around parts of Tokyo which currently change for the future, often because of the 2020 Olympic Games. In the book the topics of ‚changing cities in the past and in the future’ are brought together.
On each of all our walks we took images around on a regular basis – depending on time or distance.
The black pages in this book include the missing images from other missing districs – put on top of each other until they became quite black.

There is a third small publication A Colour Guide showing details of architecture and nature. We where wondering if there are similarities between the colors in old parts (‚deep Japan’) of japanese cities and the 63 colors of Le Corbusier.

Learn more about the project here: http://boehmkobayashi.de/?p=104

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