osaka,-japan

Daido Moriyama, Records No. 15, 2010, black-and-white photograph, 11 3/8 x 9 1/2".

Daido Moriyama

National Museum of Art Osaka

Daido Moriyama, Records No. 15, 2010, black-and-white photograph, 11 3/8 x 9 1/2".

Spanning more than half a century, “Daido Moriyama: On the Road” confirmed the artist’s importance to the story of Japanese photography. The quintessential street photographer, Moriyama has, since 1965, prowled avenues and alleys in Japanese cities and across the globe. His quarry is not only the unguarded human subject, often seen from the side or behind, but also our idealized, artificial replicas of ourselves, from store mannequins to movie-poster idols. Moriyama’s art, despite his penchant for surface and artifice, is anything but celebratory. If his touchstone is Warhol, whose art he seems to mimic in the 1974 silk screen Harley-Davidson and who appears on a TV screen in Tokyo, 2011, it’s the Warhol of the 1962–63 “Death and Disaster” series. For Moriyama, despite his disavowal in a recent interview of any social or documentary mission, urban life is tragic theater.

The

Sign-in to keep reading

Artforum print subscribers have full access to this article. If you are a subscriber, sign in below.

Not registered for artforum.com? Register here.

SUBSCRIBE NOW for only $50 a year—65% off the newsstand price—and get the print magazine plus full online access to this issue and our archive.*

Order the PRINT EDITION of the November 2011 issue for $17 or the ONLINE EDITION for $5.99.

* This rate applies to U.S. domestic subscriptions.