Will Matsuda is a Japanese American photographer whose personal works are largely influenced by two seemingly unrelated topics: the beauty of nature and an eagerness to better understand his own mixed-racial identity. Following these thematics, his latest photo series, Kyoushuu, takes a look at Kyoto – the city where his parents met and lived – through atypical perspectives.
日裔美籍摄影师 Will Matsuda 的个人作品，灵感源于看似毫无关联的两方面：一个是来自于大自然的美景，另一个则来自于他对了解自身不同种族身份的渴望。他的最新摄影系列《Kyoushuu》也延续着同样的主题，并以独特的角度来定格京都——这也是他的父母相遇、生活的城市。
Sharing his experience of shooting the project, Matsuda tells us, “It rained nonstop for almost the entire week I was there. Almost all of these photos were taken in the last day and a half while I was in Kyoto, due to the fact that those were the hours where there wasn’t torrential rain. This definitely led to a kind of strange, dream-like quality to the photos I took while I was there.”
Matsuda cites the novels of Haruki Murakami as one of his influences: “There’s this sort of slow magical realism that creeps into some of these photos, and that’s definitely inspired by Murakami, or The Wind-Up Bird Chronicles in particular. There’s this great quote from the book that I think about a lot: ‘To know one’s own state is not a simple matter. One cannot look directly at one’s own face with one’s own eyes, for example. One has no choice but to look at one’s reflection in the mirror. Through experience, we come to believe that the image is correct, but that is all.'”
For Matsuda, photography has become a way for him to explore the notion of home, belonging, and heritage. He tells us, “I’m interested in the intersection of my Western gaze and my inherent Japanese-ness, which is familiar to anyone with a diasporic identity. I have an idea of Japan that is profoundly shaped by my socialization in the West through images and narratives about Japan in pop culture, from katakana text on seemingly every streetwear brand to the whitewashing of Hollywood. I hope to subvert the image of Japan that has been fed to me by tapping into something deeper, something within me. I find that photography is a really powerful tool to unveil my subconscious, and maybe even my own histories, to myself.”