second nature

Around the end of my teens, I started to make drawings every day. I was dreaming of the art world and hoping to get into an art college.
I spent hours looking at a certain motif. After I spent enough time with it, I would make a drawing on charcoal paper. I would become absorbed in the act of observation (to the point of actually losing track of time) and then I would throw myself into burying charcoal powder in the fiber of the paper. Through the movement of the clouds, I became aware of changes in the light, and as the sun went down, I noticed how my impression of a motif would gradually change.
My senses grew keener over a long period of concentration and tension. Then I would feel something discomforting about the difference between the original motif and the completed drawing, so I would doggedly try to bridge that gap.
It wasn't simply the act of copying the outline, the lines and the contrasts in the object, it was an imagining of the object's being.
"Look carefully - imagine - and precisely express." I learned a lot from these drawings.
Now I take my camera and make regular visits to the museum. As I look closely at the minute details of the taxidermic animals on display there, a sense of excitement comes over me. Then, after some time has passed and my head has cooled down a bit, I start pointing my camera.
First, I concentrate completely on the finder and operating the camera. Though there is no chance that our eyes will meet, I feel a stronger sense of the animals' being now than I think I would have when they were alive. Next, I take home the film, and develop and print the pictures. When the images emerge from the photographic paper as it is immersed in the developing fluid, I feel a renewed sense of excitement. Then I carefully fix the image to ensure that it won't ever escape.
When faced with the finished photograph, I always feel a little confused. The image is different from the one I saw when I took the picture. There seems to be a slight disparity between the subject that the camera recorded and the subject that I remember. The difference is only very subtle - you'd miss it if you didn't pay close attention, and you wouldn't notice it with only a single glance. It might just be my imagination. I find myself losing track of what's real and what's fake, and what my original assumptions were. I don't think of this ambiguity as anything negative. Perhaps I am confident that there is something here that I can trust. Somewhere along the line I became aware of a second nature.
The subject of this series is taxidermic and plastic replicas of animals. I am currently still working on it.


second natureについてのテキスト



仕上がった写真の前で、僕はいつも少し戸惑う。撮影していた時と何かが違う。カメラが記録した被写体と僕が記憶していた被写体との間には、僅かながら差異を感じる。それは本当に微妙な違いで、注意を払わないと見落としてしまうし、ただ一度眺めただけでは見つけられないこともある。もしかすると僕の思い込みだけかもしれない。何が本物でどれが偽物なのか、そもそも決めつけられるものなのか、分からなくなる。しかし、これら曖昧な掴みどころのなさを、僕は否定的にとらえていない。むしろ信用できる何かを含んでいると確信している。いつからか、second nature(第二の天性)というものを意識するようになった。