Kosuke Okahara: Blue Affair

Blue Affair is an experimental short film and a photo book based on the dream from the time a photographer, Kosuke OKahara, spent in a town called Koza.
Like a dream world, scenes in Koza pass beyond Okahara’s imagination. One moment, the photographer sees people sleeping on the street. In the next, suddenly he finds the body of a dead cat.

A middle-aged woman approaches Okahara on the street and takes him to a Karaoke bar unchanged since the Vietnam War era. The experience felt like entering a time slip. When he goes back, the Karaoke bar is shut, and he sees a “no entry” sign. Just like being inside a dream, stories occur outside of his consciousness. There is no room for arbitrary stories.

Trailer short film:

Once he left the town, the memories of his time in the town started infiltrating his dreams. It made him return to the town, again and again, to dive deeper. It was like going back to dreams, just like diving into the beautiful blue ocean in Okinawa. (An excerpt from the afterword of the book)

Printing Black & White images in the darkroom by Kosuke Okahara. This video shows how to process black and white printing in the darkroom.

Special edition is a form of a big book with a limited edition silver gelatin print all handmade by the artist. Documentary/Experimental Short film “blue affair” won Jury’s Special Mention at Las Palmas de Gran Canaria International Film Festival.

About the Author

Born in 1980 in Tokyo. Based in Kyoto, Japan. Represented by POLKA Galerie in Paris and Only Photography gallery in Berlin. Okahara grew up in Tokyo and started his career as a photographer after college graduation where he studied education. He has been pursuing the stories based on his theme “Ibasyo” which, in Japanese, refers to physical and emotional space in which one can exist.

A portrait of Kosuke Okahara

In 2010, He was awarded the W. Eugene Smith Fellowship with his long-term project “Ibasyo” on Japanese girls who self-harm. He was also awarded Getty Images Grant with his works on the post-Fukushima nuclear disaster in 2012. His long-term work on Colombia also received the Pierre & Alexandra Boulat grant in 2014. He has published 6 monographs and some art books. His 10-meter scroll art book “Vanishing existence” was exhibited at the art book exhibition in Bavarian State Library in Munich along with artists such as Picasso, Andy Warhol, and Keith Haring and became a part of permanent collections. One of his series “Almost Paradise” was also exhibited at “100 years Leica photography” shows among a few Japanese photographers.

His works have been exhibited in museums, art fairs, and international photo festivals such as Kunsthal in Rotterdam, Deichtorhallen in Hamburg, Quai Branly Museum, C/O Berlin, Tokyo Photographic art museums, Paris Photo, AIPAD, and Kyotographie. in 2021, he made a video piece only with still images. The work was nominated for Clermont-Ferrand International Short Film Festival, the world’s biggest short film. festival. The same work won Jury’s Special Mention at Las Palmas International Film Festival and Best Contemporary Experimental Short Award at Sapporo International Short Film Festival. He continues shooting the stories that touch him.

Hardcover: 192 pages
Afterword: Tatsuya Ishikawa
Publisher: THE BACKYARD (December 25th, 2020)
Edition: 800 copies
Language: English, Japanese
Size: 8.93 x 6.77 inches

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