CASE TOKYO is pleased to announce its upcoming Shunji Dodo photography exhibition “Osaka Portrait” from January 10 – January 25, 2020. We will present twenty artworks taken with a twin-lens reflex camera in Osaka’s Shinsekai area in the 1980s, selected from Dodo’s series “Osaka Portrait” (1976–).

Further, a concurrent exhibition at the neighboring NANZUKA Gallery (floor B2 of the same building) showcases photographer Hiroo Kikai’s 1996 work “Ya Chimata” – portraits and street photographs taken in Tokyo’s Asakusa district. Osaka and Tokyo, Shinsekai and Asakusa – with the concurrent NANZUKA show, CASE TOKYO invites you to experience the works of two master photographers expressing themselves through streetphotographs taken in different-yet-similar cities.

The opening reception for “Osaka Portrait”, with the artist in attendance, will be held on Friday, January 10, 2020, from 18:00–20:00. Reception party and exhibition are open to the public and free of charge.

“Shinsekai is a familiar place to me, who had been raised in Osaka’s working class districts. On the way back from the zoo, from museums or from the cinema, we often visited its side alleys and ate kushi-age, dora-yaki and similar treats before going home.
I photographed this place for two years beginning in 1976, using a 4x5 camera and color film to capture the town and its offerings. (The work was exhibited in 1978 at the Nikon Salon galleries in Osaka and Ginza) After that, I photographed the town for three, four years with a 35mm camera in one of my hands, walking around taking snapshot photos.
But there was a feeling of inadequacy I couldn’t shake. It was in the weeks before winter made its first approaches; a difficult season for the men. In the winter, one’s life, one’s true self shows up in the face and the flesh, for everyone who knows to read them.
And even then, although my work and my life were now different, I still saw those faces which revealed the men behind them, only now I found that I was only staring.
But I wanted to engage with them truly, to touch and feel them. I decided to begin photographing with a twin-reflex. It is a very gentle camera, one where you look through the viewfinder from above, forcing you into a gentle bowing posture. Even the sound of the shutter is gentle and quiet. Sometimes, older people understood the camera as a chance to come over and chat with me.”

— from Shunji Dodo’s photobook “Shinsekai: Now and Then”


Shunji DODO 百々俊二

Born in Osaka in 1947. Graduated from the Kyushu Sangyo University Faculty of Arts Department of Photography and became professor at the Tokyo Shashin Senmon Gakko the same year. Became a professor at the Osaka Shashin Senmon Gakko (now: Visual Arts College Osaka) in 1972, and became head of the school in 1998. In 2015 he was appointed head of the Irie Taikichi Memorial Museum of Photography in Nara City. Continues to engage in photography both as a photographer and as a photography educator.

His photobook “A Radiant Land: Kii Peninsula” won the Annual Award of the Japan Photographic Society, his series “A Radiant Land with Thousands of Years” the Ina Nobuo Award. His photobook “Osaka” won the the 23rd Photographic Society Award and the 27th Higashikawa Prize’s Hidano Kazuemon Award.


Case Tokyo
1-5-11 Haramachi, Meguroku-ku, Tokyo, 150-0011, Japan