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New Yorker Review: Kenro Izu at Howard Greenberg

Posted By Administration, Monday, January 28, 2013
Updated: Thursday, January 02, 2014
India, Where Prayer Echoes

Through February 23, 2013


An unusual invitation sewed the seeds for this new body of work by Japanese photographer Kenro Izu. Izu was invited to a cremation. On the banks of the Ganges River Izu watched with particular attention to the family members through the 3-hour ceremony. The body of a family member, which came decorated in flowers and fabrics, turned slowly to ash and was swept back into the river. The mood was amazingly calm and for Izu a very different experience than the traditions to which he is accustomed.

Izu was inspired by this experience so much so that he returned to India and walked with an intention of discovery. Working with the 19th century tradition of the travel photographer and a 14 x 20 in. large format camera and all its cumbersome equipment Izu captured sprit-filled frames of a country and a people. The platinum palladium process employed lends to timelessness, nostalgia, and easy contemplation.

In vignetted view with the soft quality of motion blur the masses move, prey, and baith at the water's edge in Rameswarm #665. Works like this set the tone for place and the mood for reflection. Ancient temples, mounds, and shrines appear to pierce the sky or act as beacons of communication to other planes, even to the nonbelievers among us. Even the land, its mountains and knotted trees seem older than all memory could imagine. Holy men, women, and children, all stare with soft but piercing eyes; our soul meets theirs. These works transport us at every turn to a place and a moment that existed in one breath but that promises permanence and endurance through the frames of the keen, the honest, the genuine prints of Izu.

For more information on the exhibition, please visit Howard Greenberg Gallery

New Yorker Review


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