Shinya Arimoto

Shinya Arimoto was born in Osaka in 1971. He graduated in Fine Arts from the University of Osaka. In love with urban landscapes, he is specifically interested in their people, dealing on an equal footing homeless, marginalized and Mr. All-the-world.

Shinya Arimoto, “Portrait of Tibet”, 1999.

In this interview He told us about his career on photography, the first works and the process of the Series “Ariphoto” which will be present on Goa Photo 2015.

[GOA PHOTO] How did you start in photography?

[SHINYA] liked painting and mechanical things as a child. My interests were naturally suited towards cameras and photography.

[GOA PHOTO] Can you tell us a little bit of your career?

[SHINYA] I was born in 1971 in Osaka, Japan. I graduated from Visual Arts Osaka in 1994, and started a career as a freelance photographer. I photographed personal work in Tibet for 5 years, which won the 35th Taiyo Award as “Portrait of Tibet” and was published as a book in 1999. Today I am based in Tokyo, and I hold solo and group photographic exhibitions in Japan and abroad. I currently also administer my own gallery in Tokyo and self publish books as well. I am also a lecturer in a photography college in Tokyo.

[GOA PHOTO] What kind of photography you do? Can you define it?

[SHINYA] I do not find a need to categorize my work. I think it suffices to say it is a “photograph”.

[GOA PHOTO] About the work “Ariphoto” how did you get this idea, and how was the photographic process? For you what was the most important output from this series?

[SHINYA] “Ariphoto” is a tentative title for this series that is sequentially held in my gallery. I made this place for the chance of independence so as not to be affected by the situation of opinion of others. I exhibit my new work at the timing that I want to show it. Anything that has come from this, for example invitation to show work in a national museum, or self-publishing the pictures, is a result of my process.

Shinya Arimoto, “Ariphoto”, 2006–2014.

[GOA PHOTO] So far where have you presented this work? How was the audience feedback?

[SHINYA] I exhibited this work in Tokyo, Osaka, and Paris. Many people have told me that my pictures “are different from Tokyo that I know”. I want people to see my Tokyo streets.

[GOA PHOTO] The theme of Goa Photo’s first edition is “The Other”, so can you tell us how is “the other” present in the series you are going to present there?

[SHINYA] “Tokyo” for me is “The Other” for other people; “Tokyo” for the other people is “The Other” for me. And “Tokyo” for me will be a special “The Other” for the other people. Simply, everyone is “the other” from everyone else.

Shinya Arimoto, “Ariphoto”, 2006–2014.

[GOA PHOTO] As an artist, beyond the role of promoting photographers works, what do you think is the importance of a festival, and what can it do for photography?

[SHINYA] It’s that it gets as many people as possible to become interested in all parts of photographing- taking photos, viewing photos, and showing photos.

[GOA PHOTO] Have you ever been in Goa?

[SHINYA] I traveled and stayed and photographed in India for a long time when I was young, but I have never been to Goa. I want to visit there someday.

Originally published at