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The Man Who Became a Camera, Film Screening

The Man Who Became a Camera, 2003
Color video, 91 minutes
Directed and produced by Masashi Kohara
Subtitles: English, translated by Ivan Vartanian

Kala is excited to host a Film Screening, The Man Who Became a Camera on Saturday, March 16, 7pm in the Kala Gallery. Doors open at 6:30pm. Tickets are available on Eventbrite. (Sliding scale $0-20)

Recommended: General – $10-20 Sliding Scale Donation, Students – Free with ID
NOTAFLOF (no one turned away for lack of funds)

For three years, Masashi Kohara met with, followed and filmed the extraordinary and brilliant figure, Takuma Nakahira, an important figure in the art world in Japan in the 1970s. A writer of some of the most brilliant critical theory on photography as well as an innovative photographer in his own right, Nakahira was instrumental in founding the magazine, Provoke, 1968-1969, that published photography and critical essays, and importantly gave its name to a generation of artists working in that raw political moment. Nakahira came to  photography through the encouragement of Shomei Tomatsu, who he assisted in organizing and selecting the first major show about photography in Japan, a Century of Japanese Photography. He was also a close friend of Daido Moriyama, when they both lived in Zushi, not far from Tokyo. The photographers in Provoke worked in a distracted, anguished style, and Nakahira’s photographs are both highly emotional reactions to life in Tokyo during those years, and later more conceptual. In 1977 he suffered from memory loss, brought on by alcohol, and since his recovery he was by turns amusing, amazingly insightful, and quixotic.This film follows him in his day-to-day activities, and also to a conference in Okinawa, where he shared the stage with Tomatsu, Moriyama and other photographers of his generation. The film is insightful and amused, and made with great sympathy for the oddball insights and imagination of this brilliant man in his strange but also wonderful condition. – Sandra S. Phillips, Curator emerita of photography, SFMOMA

Born in 1978, Masashi Kohara has worked as a filmmaker and a independent curator. He was awarded the 10th Koen Shigemori Photography Critic Award for “A Note on Takuma Nakahira” in 2005 and The Photographic Society of Japan Awards Scholastic in 2016. As a curator at the Izu Photo Museum, Kohara organized “Nobuyoshi Araki Photobook Exhibition: Ararchy,” “Manabu Miyazaki: The Pencil of Nature,” “Tazuko Masuyama: Until Everything Becomes a Photograph” among others. His books include Suspending Time: Life—Photography—Death (with Geoffrey Batchen and Yoshiaki Kai), Visions of Fuji: A Portrait of the Japanese People as Seen Through Mt. Fuji, and War and Peace: Images of Japan As Seen in Hōdō Shashin (Reportage Photography) (with Mari Shirayama) Detective in the Forest (with Manabu Miyazaki).

Event Details

Date: March 16, 2019

Time: 7:00 pm–9:00 pm

Kala Art Institute & Gallery
2990 San Pablo Avenue
Berkeley, CA 94702