1850s Japanese photography by Torin Boyd & Naomi Izakura

The origins of Japanese Photography during the 1850s:
A discussion by photo historians Naomi Izakura and Torin Boyd

Photography was first introduced in 1839 when the French government presented the findings of Daguerre and Niepce to the world. But due to Japan’s isolationist policy, this technology was not practiced in the country until May 1853 when Commodore Matthew Perry and his Pacific expedition fleet arrived on its shores. Perry’s official photographer, Eliphalet Brown Jr. (1816-1886) took daguerreotypes for this expedition, becoming the first person on record to ever produce photographs in Japan.

Prior to this date, there were small groups of scholars involved in the study of Rangaku, or “Dutch Learning”. This research into Western sciences included the new technology of photography. But it was not until 1857 that any successful results were produced when scholars of the Satsuma clan made a daguerreotype portrait of their lord, Shimazu Nariakira. As a result, all current history concerning photographs ever being produced in Japan begins with the arrival of Perry in 1853.

Japanese photo historians Naomi Izakura and Torin Boyd will be discussing these facts as well as other photographic activity in Japan during the 1850s. Also to be discussed will be Izakura’s discovery of the first time Japanese ever sat before a camera in 1851. This concerns the castaway crew of the Eiriki-Maru who were rescued off the coast of California and taken to San Francisco where they were photographed aboard a U.S. revenue ship in 1851.

INFO:

– Date: Thursday, February 27, 2003.
– Time: 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
– Where: The Foreign Correspondents’ Club of Japan in Yurakucho
– Admission: FREE and open to the public.
– Food & drink: if you like, an optional buffet with table seating will be
available for \1575 (tax included). RESERVATIONS FOR THE BUFFET MUST BE MADE prior to the show date by calling the FCCJ at 03-3211-3161. Drinks can be purchased at the bar.

ADDRESS INFO:

The Foreign Correspondents’ Club of Japan is located on the 20th Floor of the Yurakucho Denki North Building. It is a two minute walk from the following stations:

– Hibiya Station
– Ginza Station
– Yurakucho Station

Parking is also available in the basement of the Yurakucho Denki Building (at half price if the parking stub is stamped by the FCCJ reception desk).

Address:

The Foreign Correspondents’ Club of Japan
Yurakucho Denki North Bldg. 20F
Yurakucho 1-7-1 Chiyoda-ku Tokyo 100-0006
tel: 03-3211-3161
fax: 03-3211-3168

———-

Torin Boyd Photography
Tokyo, Japan

International Professional Photo Fair (IPPF)

This annual camera show for pro photographers will be held as follows:

When: March 6 to 8, 10 am to 5 pm.
Where: Ikebukuro Sunshine City Convention Center in Ikebukuro, Tokyo.

Targeting professional photographers, this show features mostly pro-use equipment such as large-format cameras, commercial studio equipment, high-end digital cameras, portrait studio backgrounds and props, etc. Companies like Comet, broncolor, Toyo, Wista, Dicomed, Ilford, Canon, Nikon, Hasselblad, Linhof, Noritsu Koki, Kindai International, and Horseman are represented.

http://www.jij.co.jp/event/ippf/gaiyou.html (Japanese)

Photo Expo 2003 on Mar. 14-16, Tokyo Big Sight

Japan largest camera show and photo accessory show will be held on March 14-16, 2003 at Tokyo Big Sight (accessible via the Yurikamome Line from JR Shimbashi Station). Hours: 10:00 am to 5:00 pm. Admission is free, but registration at the door is required.

Sadly, the show will be held only in Tokyo from this year. It will not be held in Osaka as in previous years.

See Web site at http://www.photoexpo2003.com/

Tokyo Photo Night: Shigeichi Nagano on Feb. 5

Date: Wednesday, February 5, 2003 (6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.).

An invitation to the Tokyo photo community and friends!

The next viewing of the Tokyo Photo Night series will be held on Wednesday,
February 5, from 6:30 p.m. at the Foreign Correspondents’ Club of Japan in
Yurakucho. This time TPN is pleased to be showing the work of:

Shigeichi Nagano
A Chronicle of Japan: A Life in Photography

For over fifty years veteran photographer Shigeichi Nagano has documented
Japan from the postwar era, to the rise of the industrial age, to the
digital dependent culture of today. Along the way his style of
photojournalism has provided a human portrait of a land in transition by
combining both visual and narrative elements.

>From an early stint in the late 1940s on the editorial staff of the Sun
News Weekly in which he worked alongside Ihei Kimura, and through the early
1950s as a staff photographer for the Iwanami Library of Photography,
Nagano traveled all over Japan documenting the changing times of his
country. In 1954 he turned freelance and in the decades to follow earned a
reputation as one of Japan’s top photojournalists, producing photo essays
and documentary films.

To this day Nagano remains actively involved in photography at the age of
77. He is the recipient of numerous awards including: Camera Arts Award and
Artist Award, Japan Photo Critics Association, 1960; Ina Nobuo Award, 1986;
Award of the Year, Photographic Society of Japan, 1991; Award of the Year,
Photographic Society of Japan, 1995. His works are held in the permanent
collections of Tokyo Metropolitan Museum of Photography, the George Eastman
House and the Houston Museum of Fine Arts. He has also published numerous
books including: Japan’s Dream Age, 1978; A Chronicle of Japan, 2000; and
Distant Gaze, 2001.

This event is open to the public, you do not have to be a member of the
FCCJ to attend.

INFO:

– Date: Wednesday, February 5, 2003.

– Time: 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

– Where: The Foreign Correspondents’ Club of Japan in Yurakucho

– Admission: FREE and open to the public.

– Food & drink: if you like, an optional buffet service will be available
for \1575 (tax included). RESERVATIONS FOR THE BUFFET MUST BE MADE prior to
the show date by calling the FCCJ at 03-3211-3161. Drinks can be purchased
at the bar.

ADDRESS INFO:

The Foreign Correspondents’ Club of Japan is located on the 20th Floor of
the Yurakucho Denki North Building. It is a two minute walk from the
following stations:

– Hibiya Station
– Ginza Station
– Yurakucho Station

Parking is also available in the basement of the Yurakucho Denki Building
(at half price if the parking stub is stamped by the FCCJ reception desk).

Address:

The Foreign Correspondents’ Club of Japan
Yurakucho Denki North Bldg. 20F
Yurakucho 1-7-1 Chiyoda-ku Tokyo 100-0006
tel: 03-3211-3161
fax: 03-3211-3168

——————————————————————–

Check out the Tokyo Photo Night WEBSITE.

www2.gol.com/users/tbcam/tpn.html

Here you can view a sample of Shigeichi Nagano’s work, get a map &
directions to this month’s location, as well as see the works of previous
Tokyo Photo Night photographers. This website is bilingual .

——————————————————————–

Produced by Torin Boyd

Camera phone proliferation in 2002

Without a doubt, the proliferation of cell phone cameras (called camera-tsuki keitai denwa) was the year 2002’s top news for photography in Japan. They were everywhere this year. It sort of reminded me of the Print Club boom that swept Japan several years ago.

According to J-Phone, 6 million camera cell phones for their Sha-Mail service have been sold since June 2001 when it was first introduced. (“Sha” is an abbreviation for the word “Shashin” which means photograph.) Total domestic sales of cell phone cameras in fiscal 2002 is expected to exceed 20 million units (compared to 6 million in fiscal 2001). And over half of all cell phones sold had a built-in digital camera.

In fiscal 2003, a whopping 30 million cell phone cameras are expected to be sold in Japan. This is about one-third the number of single-use (or disposable) cameras sold in Japan. I’m sure that the cell phone camera will greatly affect sales of single-use (or disposable) cameras. I bet they will start making cell phone cameras that can be connected directly to a printer to print images. The cell phone may also become an electronic wallet that you can use to pay for train tickets and vending machine soft drinks. Times are sure changing. I mean just a few years ago, the idea of using a cell phone to take pictures was totally unimaginable. What next?

Kodak quits digital and APS camera markets in Japan

On Dec. 15, 2002, Kodak shut down its “Kodak@Shop” online store and stopped selling its APS cameras and consumer digital cameras to the Japanese market. Although its digital camera sales in the US has been doing alright, it could hardly compete in Japan with the features and design found in Japanese-made digital cameras.

It had not introduced any new digital camera models in Japan during the past year.

It will concentrate on the digital print business in Japan instead.

Nikon closes seven camera repair centers in 2002

At the end of June or July 2002, Nikon closed its camera repair centers in the following cities:

Omiya: Closed in July 2002
Shizuoka: Closed in July 2002
Okayama: Closed in June 2002
Takamatsu: Closed in June 2002
Kagoshima: Closed in June 2002
Niigata: Closed in July 2002
Kanazawa: Closed in June 2002

If you are in or near these cities and need your Nikon camera to be repaired, you will have to send it to the Tokyo repair center. For more info, call Customer Service: 0570-028000.

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