The Shadow of James Joyce at Farmleigh
Motoko Fujita is a Japanese photographer who began taking photographs when very young. She started by taking photos of stray dogs on the streets to keep track of them but she eventually expanded her subjects to include other things finding subjects in all sorts of places and things. Motoko moved to Ireland a few years ago and now lives in Chapelizod where she has spent time taking the images that now make up the exhibition ‘The Shadow of James Joyce’.
This is a homage to James Joyce and his last great masterpiece Finnegan’s Wake, an epic tale largely set in Chapelizod where the river Liffey beginsits last descent to the sea, Contemporary Japanese photographer Motoko Fujita captures the ethos and ambience of this historic village enfolded by the Phoenix Park on the fringes of Dublin. Selecting 24 stunning black-and-white images from the book*, Motoko guides the viewer through a townscape and landscape, the essence of a world which Joyce captured in words and which has scarcely changed since his death seventy years ago. The result is an immense journey of recall and renewal.
*= a book of the same title was published in June 2011. You can view some of the fantastic images on Flickr here.
There are two other parts to the exhibition, four delightful pieces of Washi-graphy. This part of the exhibition is a new series of experimentation work by Motoko Fujita using Japanese handmade paper and abstract photography as the subject matter.
The last piece of the exhibition is ‘a battleship shaped ghost island documentary’ – Gunkanjima. It contains documentary images of a ruined coalminers island in Nagasaki, Japan which shut down very quickly in 1974 giving it an abandoned air.
This collection is currently being displayed in the Motorhouse at Farmleigh in the Phoenix Park with Motoko Fujita present until 22nd April, 12pm – 5pm daily except Mondays.