Skin of the Nation
Japans brilliant and influential postwar photographer Shomei Tomatsu (b. 1930) has created some of the most dramatic images in the history of photography. Many of his photographs have become icons of the twentieth century. This important book is the first in-depth English-language study of Tomatsus work. Richly illustrated and handsomely designed, it features more than one hundred plates representingin ten thematic sectionsthe full range of his career.\n\nTomatsu emerged in the 1950s with his sensitive pictures of postwar Japan. In the 1960s the artist turned his camera to the aftermath of the atomic bomb and the lingering presence of the U. S. military in his homeland. In subsequent decades his lens has captured the elation of Japans economic boom and the problems inspired by his cultures increasing westernization. Throughout, Tomatsus pictures have consistently resonated not only with Japanese society but also with American culture. Included in this book are essays by distinguished scholars on all aspects of the artists life and career as well as a selection of brief excerpts from Tomatsus own writings, many of which have never appeared in English. \n\nSkin of the Nation (the books subtitle) is both a literal and metaphorical reference to the surfaces that have appeared in countless pictures throughout Tomatsus career. For the artist, skin is more than just a surface, it is a kind of map in which one can read the story of Japanits essence and its future.
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