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by Juliane Eirich
Juliane Eirich knew Japan already from previous visits, when she returned in the summer of 2011 in order to work here. But this time things were much different. A few months earlier the earthquake had destroyed the Fukushima nuclear power plant. The enthusiasm and curiosity for the foreign country mingled with a subliminal feeling of fear and threat.
With mixed emotions the photographer took residence in a beautiful old country house in the subtropical south of Japan. By bike she explored the Itoshima region and collected new impressions, by day and by night, in the countryside and in the cities, in sultry heat, pouring rain and storm. Also the ›Old Lady's House‹ where she stayed, became a place of discovery.
The photographs that were taken during the stay in Itoshima bear names as ›Towel‹, ›Wooden House‹, ›Palm Tree‹, ›Two Houses One Car‹, ›Fly Swat‹ or ›Gas Station‹. And that's exactly what can be seen in the pictures. And yet they are puzzling images. With Deserted landscapes and cityscapes, houses, trees, cars, interiors and everyday objects Juliane Eirich forms a kaleidoscope of barely interpretable impressions. It's all about the question, how environment and nature shape the way of life and culture and how people in return shape and cultivate nature and arrange themselves.
The great care and precision Juliane Eirich invests choosing and photographing her motives give proof of the unconditional interest in the things and the urge to sharpen her senses in dialogue with them and learn more. It pays to follow her on this journey.