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Taro Masushio

Asagao 2, 2020

Silver gelatin type LE print
44 x 36.1 x 2.6cm
About Taro Masushio
Taro Masushio primarily works with drawing and photography to digest the photographic history of Japan, looking in particular at lesser-known queer creatives and their stories. One photographer who has had a strong imprint on Masushio is Jun’ichi En’ya, one of the first Japanese homoerotic photographers, colloquially known as the ‘Uncle from Osaka’. Mining En’ya’s archive of thousands of photographs, Masushio sketched some of the most graphic images on discarded paper and then photographed these replicas. The resultant photographs of these sketches were then displayed in a gallery setting. These acts of repurposing and restaging run as constants throughout Masushio’s work as he continually uncovers hidden queer lineages and finds a place for them in the present. Alongside drawing, Masushio’s tender black and white photographs also echo this sense of traversing inter-generational experiences. The artist has an entire series of morning glories for example, or the asagao plant as it’s known in Japan. This flower is given to school children as an introduction to gardening, it’s a long-held tradition and serves as a connecting thread between generations. Feelings of immense pride, adoration and sincerity continually surface in Masushio’s installations as he champions the experiences of those long left in the shadows.