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Andrew Reid

Street photography panic / Fuji hysteria

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9 hours ago, Andrew Reid said:

Exactly. Fuji are wrong. The whole thing is a travesty. They are dragging his name through the internet outrage machine, too scared to defend him in case they lose a few camera sales.

If they really stood up for artists, rather than abusing them for profit, Fuji would defend him. As usual it tells us far more about Fuji's marketing men than it does about Suzuki's supposed "predatory" behaviour.

Again we see, sadly someone (@barefoot_dp) stating the obvious and because they consider it normal, it is somehow justified. Sure, companies can do whatever they like for profit. That's not news. Is it right? If they perceive edgy art to be a PR gaff all of a sudden is it ok to chuck one of your best known Japanese street photographers under a bus? When will you people get it, christ fucking wept.

In reality is not a kill-switch controlled by the company at their advantage, it is a reactionary hysterical kill switch controlled by a few outraged idiots on the internet.

Companies need to get a fucking GRIP IMO.

Appreciate you calling me out personally (rather than replying directly to the content of my post) because you don't sure my opinion or worldview. Very mature approach.

I don't see how they've thrown him under a bus though. Throwing him under a bus would be leaving the video links live so that the PC army can have a field day with it.

I'd be interested to know your opinion though, (seeing as you seem to have a lot more inside information about the story than was published in the original post) - how does the artist himself feel about all of this? Is social commentary not one of the goals of his art? And in that sense would you not say his goals might have been boosted by all of this backlash and media attention ("any news is good news", etc).

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On 2/7/2020 at 3:21 AM, Simon Young said:

Really disappointing decision by Fujifilm. Tatsuo has the balls to shoot that way in Europe as well, as shown in this video.

https://youtu.be/707nMSGq_R8

Seems like the point of Tatsuo is You Tube views.  He's not creating art or trying to capture anything but a lucky photograph.  I don't mean to be harsh and will check out more of his work.

 

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On 2/7/2020 at 12:25 PM, mercer said:

... if you think you're an "artist" or creating "art" you probably aren't one and aren't creating it.

The greatest artists of all time were passionate craftsman first and let history decide if what they created was "art."

Where do you get this opinion from? It goes against the unspoken artist rule that artist live by. You don't rag down on other artist.

I've seen true artist create art for the love and enjoyment of creating art. That's art. They don't have to be one of the "greatest artist" of all time.  I've also seen talented artist that have ego's the size of a small city and they think they're the greatest.  Both create art.

The first artist I mentioned could suck but they are creating art. Just not very good art.

I hope "all artist" are calling themselves artist and think they're creating art.  That's the point. The fact that you make a few comments like "if you think you're an "artist" or creating "art" you probably aren't one and aren't creating it.",  really rubs me the wrong way.  Artist, photographers, videographers, writers, etc, have a hard enough time making a living doing what they love.  You might be a part time video dad or whatever but give the rest of us a break and let us create.

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Looking at a couple of the series from Japan I notice a lot of young beautiful women and a lot of weathered old people. There’s a history of objectification with most of his motifs. Coupled with the black and white hard contrast look that many great Japanese artists have wielded for me the portfolio becomes mostly style and  little substance. 
 

It’s nowhere near for example Parr or Gilden.

They are beautiful photographs but as far as art goes it’s nothing special.

 

 

 

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4 hours ago, Castorp said:

Looking at a couple of the series from Japan I notice a lot of young beautiful women and a lot of weathered old people. There’s a history of objectification with most of his motifs. Coupled with the black and white hard contrast look that many great Japanese artists have wielded for me the portfolio becomes mostly style and  little substance. 
 

It’s nowhere near for example Parr or Gilden.

They are beautiful photographs but as far as art goes it’s nothing special.

 

 

 

This is true. He is nowhere near Moriyama or Fukase, not even close.

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18 hours ago, Super8 said:

Where do you get this opinion from? It goes against the unspoken artist rule that artist live by. You don't rag down on other artist.

I've seen true artist create art for the love and enjoyment of creating art. That's art. They don't have to be one of the "greatest artist" of all time.  I've also seen talented artist that have ego's the size of a small city and they think they're the greatest.  Both create art.

The first artist I mentioned could suck but they are creating art. Just not very good art.

I hope "all artist" are calling themselves artist and think they're creating art.  That's the point. The fact that you make a few comments like "if you think you're an "artist" or creating "art" you probably aren't one and aren't creating it.",  really rubs me the wrong way.  Artist, photographers, videographers, writers, etc, have a hard enough time making a living doing what they love.  You might be a part time video dad or whatever but give the rest of us a break and let us create.

Well, I'm sorry if my statement rubbed you the wrong way. It wasn't my intention to offend anyone. I was merely stating, in an albeit brief and blunt way, that using "art" to excuse, or endorse, a behavior can become a slippery slope. And since we live in a world where everybody gets a trophy for showing up, I feel that certain accolades should be earned, or bestowed upon, rather than self-proclaimed.

But you're right, by the definition of the word, any asshole that can put paint on a brush and slop it onto a piece of paper is technically an artist and are creating art and who am I to say it isn't. 

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I wonder how many people commenting on this thread are aware of the strict respect Japanese have the personal space of others in public spaces, to the point of never talking above a whisper in public transportation, following traffic, and minding their own business to an extreme, to the point of ignoring people with severe alcohol poisoning (i have witnessed this too many times).

Additionally, it is not uncommon for women in Japan to be groped while in a crowd, especially on subways. It is also pretty common for creeps to try to take upskirt photos. I think everyone can agree that doing something like that is a definite violation of personal space. Also in Japan IME there is a greater fear of creepy people as there have been a few recent cases of rape/murders and it isn't an uncommon thing in tv shows or movies or other Japanese media. 

Japan has female exclusive subway cars and no groping alarms on smartphones for this specific reason. The problem has existed for a number of years but has only been brought to light recently because Japan is getting more socially progressive.

And also as other people mentioned, even if you photograph someone in Japan, even upskirt, you're likely to get away with it scott free. People think its more embarrassing to call out the person/slap them than to just pretend like nothing happened. 

If you consider that the management that green lighting the Ads have probably been with the company since they graduated University until their current age of 40+ and are probably quite conservative/old fashioned, it makes sense how this was initially approved but then removed after public feedback

Hopefully when you view the Ad in this context, plus where many of the subjects shown are pretty women, plus his creepy/smug smile afterwards every shot, you can see why it has triggered the response (and action from Fuji).

And yes you can say that the advertising is not just domestic so why should Fujifilm conform to those rules. But Fujifilm is a Japanese company, the photographer is Japanese, and it's filmed in Japan. Go to Europe if you want to do this type of thing. 

I don't think they should've have removed him from their X program though. That was a stupid move by them imo

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Also if you looked at the Japanese comments on the video before it was deleted, they are all saying that his photgraphy style is just voyeurism, which as mentioned before is a much bigger problem here in the East than the West. 

They also said it could be considered a type of assault and that Suzuki's photography style should be outlawed, which is ridiculous, but all it takes is one bad instance and a populist lawmaker for it to become reality. 

On 2/7/2020 at 5:20 PM, barefoot_dp said:

I tend to agree with you here - and worse still, it's people flaunting the loose laws that will ruin it for everyone. Sooner or later, Governments will realise that technology has evolved and the old laws are not sufficient, so they'll simply ban photography in many public spaces (ie without permits or consent).

Now, I'm not saying this guy is not allowed to create his "art", I'm just saying that it'll be perfectly understandable when someone punches him in the face and police become involved, followed by media hysteria, followed by introduction of new laws. I certainly wouldn't want to be remembered as the artist who ruined it for everyone.

Putting aside the art debate entirely, I do wonder about the use of his images in the Fuji video. Without a release form, how could they possibly expect to use those images in a commercial video?

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On 2/10/2020 at 4:12 AM, User said:

Of course you realize that the candid nature of this type of street photography doesn't work if one has to ask for permission, right?

As far as 'respecting the boundaries' of his subjects, who of us is entitled to determine where a stranger's boundries should be? Could that be disrespectful?

You see where this can lead?

Yes I do, I just have no time for artists/people who only want to engage in complexity and care and creativity when it revolves around the pursuit of the art in and of itself, but dismiss those same things when it comes to respecting their subject(s). Again, a great artist, imho, is one who can find a way to achieve both things.

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On 2/10/2020 at 6:59 AM, Andrew Reid said:

Hysterical, just a bit.

"Predator"... There's nothing to suggest he photographs non-threatening subjects and if he is eventually unlucky enough to encounter somebody who is prepared to violently physically attack a photographer because he briefly invaded his personal space it speaks more about their values than his quite frankly.

"Scary"... I don't think it's scary having your picture taken. Surprising maybe.

"Victims"... For me it would be a privilege to be in a piece of art. They're not victims. Some of the people may even be looked back on in many years time as famed examples of life in this era of history, like the famous subjects in Henri Cartier Bresson's shots.

Not everything has to be safe and not every space a safe space for your individual rule.

If people tried to understand one-another's actions better, shared the streets and weren't so insufferably selfish and sensitive, street photography wouldn't be seen as the borderline criminal offence it is today. It's a huge loss to us as filmmakers and photographers.

I think we can definitely agree that every response in this thread speaks volumes to the type of values we each hold. And for the record, I think his art is interesting --- I just don't think it's even remotely interesting enough to justify his approach. I'm sure there are other ways he can make/push the boundaries of his art without getting in people's faces. 

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