NEW YORK, May 13, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Michael K. Yamaoka reveals a dimension of his work only hinted at in previous shows in his beguiling new photographs at the Atlantic Gallery in Chelsea, New York, June 3-June 28, 2014.
"Monumental Fantasies" is the culmination of a lifelong dream cherished by the photographer to document the legendary monuments of the world enhanced with the presence of a beautiful female figure portraying the idea of "Goddess" or "Muse." The beautiful woman herself is monumental—and the contrast between her vitality and the inert masses of ruins and buildings infused with a sense of history heightens the impact of these haunting images. In this adventurous new body of work including nude and partially draped figures, Mr. Yamaoka continues to explore his signature theme of walls expressing the ravages of time and the timeless, adding a radically different visual element. Whether in brilliant, dazzling color, hazy, light-struck tones, or subdued, almost monochromatic hues, the new images reflect the many moods of the iconic female in settings of history and fantasy.
"I have traveled the world in search of backgrounds of walls and textures that express my own vision of the passage of time, and during those journeys, I always had the dream of incorporating a beautiful woman to heighten the impact. Many years ago I included the female form in my images, and I've recently returned to that in a whole new way, more naturalistic and conceptual, but at the same time more dreamlike," says Mr. Yamaoka. "What I've done is bring together the dignity and sense of place of some of the world's notable monuments with the grace and magic aura of a goddess-like beauty. And I've subtly adjusted the results to heighten the mood and visual impact. I hope these images tell a story to the viewer, too."
Born in Japan, Mr. Yamaoka studied at Waseda University in Tokyo and graduated with a degree in photography from Art Center College of Design in California. He began his career in commercial photography at BBD&O in New York before opening his own studio, where his clients included AT&T, Toshiba, General Electric, PepsiCo, Time-Life and others of the Fortune 500 list. Simultaneously, he built a body of personal work, making images of day-to-day encounters outside the studio.
After the death of his son in 1997, Mr. Yamaoka concentrated solely on his personal photography, publishing a book, Odyssey, A 35 Year Photographic Journey, and establishing a scholarship in his son's memory. Shooting extensively worldwide, he continued to develop the themes of texture, stillness, and singularities, in details that capture the passage of time. He has exhibited in critically acclaimed solo shows in New York, Tokyo, Kyoto, Nuremberg, in many cities in Bavaria, Germany, and at the German Consulate in New York. Mr. Yamaoka's work is included in private and corporate collections worldwide, and in 2008 he was honored when I.M. Pei requested a print for his personal collection.
Says Mr. Yamaoka, "I invite you to share a fantastic odyssey, captured by my camera."
The Atlantic Gallery is located at:
548 W 28th Street New York, NY
212 219 3183
Gallery Hours: 12-6 PM Tuesday-Saturday, Thursdays till 8:30
The exhibition runs from June 3 through June 28, 2014
Opening Reception: Thursday, June 5, 2014 4:30-8:30 PM
Second Reception: Saturday, June 21, 2014 1-4:30 PM
SOURCE Michael K. Yamaoka