Lieko Shiga: Rasen Kaigan (AKAAKA Art Publishing, 2013)



Lieko Shiga was born in 1980 in the prefecture of Aichi and lives and works in Sendai, Japan. She studied at Chelsea University of Art and Design, London, graduating with a BA in Fine Arts New Media in 2004. She received the coveted Kimura Ihei Photography Award in 2008.



“In the realm of photography there is no past, present or future: The value of the photos is unstable and mutable: at times they are treated like wastepaper, sometimes they are held up to be just as valuable as the living person or even become the object of religious worship.” – Lieko Shiga






Shiga’s photographs from Kitakama are different from her previous work in that they were produced over more than four years, in concert with the local residents. This personal connection is noteworthy, and indeed it might not be far-fetched to say that Shiga is operating more as an “organizer” than as a “photographer.” Yet it’s clear that “Rasen Kaigan” is Shiga’s tour de force. The images in this book call to mind many things outside the realm of photography: surrealism, land art, happenings, sculpture and the presence of Japanese “earth spirits,” to name just a few. Kitakama was severely affected by Japan’s March 2011 tsunami, and “Rasen Kaigan” acknowledges this disaster, but this is far from a book of “tsunami photos.” Years in the making, “Rasen Kaigan” affirms Shiga’s position as one of the most compelling young photographers in Japan today. Publisher’s Info









Art Director: Daishiro Mori | 257 × 364 mm | 280 page | hardcover.




Video: Lieko Shiga on Kitakama village and the 2011 tsunami (San Francisco Museum of Modern Art)