“AKA (red) in everyday Japanese life”

写真/文 by レイ・キネイン Ray Kinnane 【ゲスト投稿】

In early 2009, while browsing through a lot of my then current, and earlier digital color photographs taken in Japan, I was surprised how much, and how many times the color red appeared in them.

Both as a major part of the subject, and as small additions to the background.

Red featured in someway in the vast majority of the pictures. I knew that the color red was considered a lucky color in Japan, and that wearing red, or using it as decoration, would bring you luck.

In Australia, red is mostly used as a warning color, and to signify danger. Of course it is used in other ways, but not nearly as much as in Japan.

This prompted me to stage an exhibition of Japanese photographs based around the color red, called “AKA (red) in everyday Japanese life”. It was held in the Saga Prefecture Art Museum in May, 2009.

Two of the photographs used in the exhibition are shown here.

The  bicycles photo, taken in Saga, and the red whales, taken in the Hankyu store in Osaka, were both amongst the photographs that prompted the show, as were some others in the show, along with new photographs featuring the color red taken especially for the show.

Here is a link to a gallery of the exhibition photographs.