Hara Mikiko is one of a number of female photographers who came of age in the 1990s. Many train their cameras on themselves, but Hara uses an old German 6 x 6 camera and a single lens to photograph young Japanese women as they go about their lives in shops, on train platforms, and in the streets of the built-up landscape of Tokyo and its environs.
Hara never sets up her photographs. She photographs without looking through the viewfinder, and thus her subjects are often unaware that she has captured them on film. Hara’s conscious choice not to frame her images often results in slightly unbalanced compositions that have the direct appeal of snapshots. The result is intimate views of urban residents shown in the midst of an unknown narrative.
Image credit: Hara Mikiko. Born in Toyama, Japan, 1967. Lives and works in Tokyo. Still, from These are Days, 2009. C-print. Smith College Museum of Art. Museum purchase with the Carroll and Nolen Asian Art Acquisition Fund. ©2015 Hara Mikiko