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Kisara Okada: Please Close Softly and Gently

Born in Tokyo, Japan.

14.11.2021

When I go out with my camera, I get the chance of encountering moments of coincidences – mysterious scenes – that makes me ask “why?”. Maybe they are too trivial to be called miracles but I am deeply impressed with them. As I release the shutter toward the moments that moves me, it reminds me that the world is exquisitely balanced and nothing is dispensable. At the same time, it tells me that I am a part of the scene when it is viewed from a distance. My goal is to leave you billions of pictures of these blissful moments. – Kisara Okada

Today, photographers are facing issues including the State Secrets Law, suppression of the freedom of expression, fears about violations of privacy and portrait rights as part of this internet age. Artists and photographers must assess the current situation and little by little alter how they present their work. For Kisara Okada, her greatest fear is that society one day may not permit snapshot photography. For this very reason, she takes pictures of present moments, considering them as small pieces of evidence that reveal what this time was really like for future retrospection. Please Close Softly and Gently (2015-2019) facilitates a glimpse into the cityscape and people in Tokyo from 2015 to 2019 in the run-up to the Tokyo Olympics as it was completely turned upside down by the spread of COVID-19. The title “Please Close Softly and Gently” contains the hope that a good beginning will follow after the nightmarish days of the epidemic as a statement wishing people someday will think that things were not all bad at that time.

Mainly engaged with street photography, Kisara Okada graduated from Musashino Art University in 2010 and has received prizes such as 1_WALL in 2011, juna21 in 2015, and KONICA PHOTO PREMIO in 2016. Additionally, Kisara Okada has published several photobooks since she started practicing photography ten years ago.

Edited by Tofu Collective