Onishi Gallery is pleased to host, Faces of the Moon: Koshu Endo, an exhibition that showcases the always existing, always changing phases of our amazing moon by Japanese photographer Koshu Endo. Endo was inspired make the moon his subject matter due to the way this seemingly simple object presents itself in so many varied forms, day to day. Time, seasons, weather, the endeavors of man – all are represented in the way we view the moon and how it presents itself to us. With this exhibition, he has brought a collection of imagery exclusively focusing on the moon as it waxes and wanes and illuminates the evening sky and it’s surroundings. Capturing these instances within such constant change makes works these views of ‘Endo’s personal moon,’ which he shares with all.
When Endo was five years old, he was captivated by a huge red moon that be observed floating in the distance. The young Endo couldn’t help but gaze in awe of the phenomenon in front of him. The lives of the Japanese people have always been closely linked with the moon and it has been an inspiration for countless literary works. The artist reminisces about his first experience with the moon as a child and stated “Even now, a half century later, this remains a clear and vivid memory. It’s almost as if that moon somehow has taken up residence in my heart.” There are also customs associated with the moon in Japan, and it is said to be linked directly to the seasons and their variations in weather. Endo’s decision to show this moon-themed exhibition in autumn in New York is influenced by the Japanese tradition autumn being the season for moon viewing. He hopes that regardless of the way the moon is perceived in different cultures, or however a certain individual reacts to the beauty of the moon, this will remain a universal object of supreme beauty and worthy of this artistic theme.
Koshu Endo, born in 1954 in Nagano Prefecture, graduated from the Department of Applied Chemistry, School of Science and Engineering from Waseda University. Apart from photographing a variety of scenes including artwork, figure portraits, scenery, and celestial bodies, Endo also created integrated works of art such as design and copywriting. In 2015, he hosted large-scale photography gallery events at Takashimaya in Nihonbashi, Kyoto, Osaka, and Yokohama, attracting approximately 80,000 people.
Before his career as an artist, however, Endo hoped to be a scientist. A scientist experiments and observes the daily course of life. Those tasks are not limited to the fields of science, however, and are important when trying to ascertain the essence of things invisible to the human eye, unless you look very closely. Toward that end, Endo takes photographs, looking closely to capture the essence of what he sees.
In 2017, after his first solo exhibition here at Onishi Gallery, two of Endo’s photography works ‘Evening Moon’ and ‘Rising Sun’ were acquired by the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) by the artist and the gallery, where the museum plans to include the works within their Pavilion for Japanese Art Collection.