Tsukiji Zero


The Sanya area, in Tokyo, which used to be known as a place for day labourers and one of the three major slums in Japan, is where I spent 7 years photographing. Throughout those 7 years, I constantly felt disappointed that I wasn’t able to witness it at its peak, when it was bristling with energy and abounded with alcohol and violence.

My photo book, ‘Another Side’ (2012) was able to capture a tiny slice of what was Sanya and was no longer Sanya.

The rough voices of young labourers exchanging curses feels like real life. By coincidence, what I wasn’t able to find in Sanya, I’ve been able to find in Tsukiji. Photographing Tsukiji may be my way of finishing what I started in Sanya. Sometimes it feels like I am standing in what is left of Tsukiji, after the relocation. Tsukiji is a remarkable place. Despite being in the middle of Tokyo, it can feel like time has stopped here. Since nothing seems to change, I even doubt that I am seeing the transition that is taking place before my eyes. It’s like a huge ordered structure balanced on a small chaotic base; somehow maintaining a perfect balance. That’s what it feels like to me. Tsukiji is scheduled to relocate and not everyone is in favour of the move.


いつの時代も再開発というものは見えないところで着々と進んで行くものだ。かつてあった景色は忘れられ、名残り惜しまれた声もすぐに聞かれなくなる。無形のものを楽しみ、憂う精神はいつのまにか日本人の中から消えてしまったのであろうか。 築地という街は時代と共に様々な貌を持って来た。明治時代、築地には外国人居留地が置かれ横浜と並んでハイカラな街であった。

市場で話を聞くに、皆が皆移転を快く受け入れているわけではないようだ。移転を期に店じまいをする人や、仕方ないと割り切るしかないと語る人もいる。 老朽化が進み様々な問題が山積する築地市場に移転という選択肢しかなかったのかは誰もが思うところであろうが、一つ言えることは、80年に渡って築地にあった市場を見る事ができるのは今が最後だということだ。 消えてゼロになってしまうこの景色、ゼロから作られる景色、せめてでも写真として保存しておくことが、私が次世代へ残すことができる唯一の仕事であると考える。

However, don’t get me wrong, It’s not as if I am on some kind of mission to record this soon to be lost landscape. My interest simply derives from a sense of inquisitiveness in recording this vista before it is gone. Kids have things they like to hide away as their personal treasures, regardless of what they are. For me, if a door is closed, I want to open it. If it is dark, I want to peer into the darkness and see what’s there. That’s all there is to it. These photographs will eventually belong to the past. Every generation experiences redevelopment that is proceeding in the background, out of sight. People forget what the cityscape used to look like and those that expressed regret for what has been lost, will fade away. Though this project may have started as a way to finish what I started in Sanya, my approach changed after I started working at Tsukiji. “Don’t you feel regret that we won’t be able to see this place again?” That is why I am trying to reverse time and erase the future by recording ‘now.’ Can’t I record the empty shell that Tsukiji will become after the move, now? Photography may be a kind of time machine. This milieu is going to disappear and become Zero. This landscape will will be reborn from Zero. I see this photographic record as the only way to leave behind this view for future generations.

新納翔は1982年、横浜生まれ。早稲田大学中退後、2009~10年にGallery Niepceのメンバーとして、本格的に写真制作活動をスタートさせた。前作の東京・山谷を7年かけて撮影した「Another Side」(2012年にLibro Arteから写真集として刊行)もそうだったのだが、新納は徹底して「内側からの視点」にこだわり続ける写真家だ。今回、東京・築地のギャラリーと書店とカフェが合体した「コミュニケーションギャラリー」ふげん社に展示された新作の「築地0景」でも、警備会社のガードマンとして勤務しながら、メインテーマである築地市場を撮影し続けたのだという。





1982 Born in Yokohama, Japan
2001 Graduated Azabu high school
2002 Enter Waseda Univ. and major in applied physics
2006 Drop out Waseda Univ.
2009 Participated a Gallery Niepce (-2010)
2012 Teach how to make a digital print as a teacher at Kawasaki city museum

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