“A brilliant piece of social documentation, capturing perfectly the loneliness, sadness and desperation that so often accompany sexual or human relationships." –Martin Parr, The Photobook
For his notorious Park photos, taken by night in Tokyo’s Shinjuku, Yoyogi, and Aoyama parks during the 1970s, Kohei Yoshiyuki used a 35mm camera, infrared film and flash to capture a secret community of lovers and voyeurs. His pictures document the people who gathered in these parks at night for clandestine trysts, as well as the many spectators lurking in the bushes who watched—and sometimes participated in—these couplings.
With their raw, snapshot-like quality, these images not only uncover the hidden sexual exploits of their subjects, both same-sex and heterosexual, but they also serve as a chronicle of a Japan we rarely see. As Martin Parr writes in The Photobook: A History Volume II, The Park is “a brilliant piece of social documentation, capturing perfectly the loneliness, sadness and desperation that so often accompany sexual or human relationships in a big, hard metropolis like Tokyo.”
This newly designed, comprehensive edition of Kohei Yoshiyuki: The Park brings this collectible classic back into print with eight never-before-seen images, as well as documentation of the sold-out 1980 Japanese zines that predated the 2007 Hatje Cantz/Yossi Milo edition.
ABOUT THE ARTIST
Japanese photographer Kohei Yoshiyuki (born 1946) first came to prominence with the 1979 debut of his Park photos at the Komei Gallery,Tokyo.Yoshiyuki had his premiere exhibition outside of Japan at Yossi Milo Gallery in New York in 2007, and his photos are held in numerous collections worldwide, including the Brooklyn Museum, NY; Hessel Museum of Art, Bard College, Annandale-on-Hudson, NY; the Metropolitan Museum of Art, NY; Museum of Contemporary Photography, Chicago; the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; the Museum of Modern Art, NY; the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; and Swedish Arts Council, Stockholm.