Takeshi MITA

Born in 1979, Takeshi Mita grew up in Hiroshima Prefecture until he graduated high school. He moved to Tokyo to attend Tama Art University and as he continued his studies in graduate school, he majored in painting (printmaking) under the Graduate Program and completed the master’s degree course in 2004.

During his childhood in Hiroshima Prefecture, he enjoyed spending long hours gazing the empty space of parks and schoolyards and he was the type who threw soft looks toward “helpless creatures.”

After completing his master’s degree, he started his career as an artist while continuing to work as a teaching assistant at his university. And in 2008, he put on his first solo exhibition at The Yoseido Gallery in Ginza, Tokyo, where he presented artworks using techniques of both photography and printmaking. His numerous works of unique perspective and composition that showed his views toward ephemerality received high praise although it was his first exhibition.

Mita, in his works, uses techniques mainly of photography, but the completed works are not what we call “straight photographs,” rather, he consolidates different time and space on one picture plane creating a “spatial-temporal world” that does not exist in reality. Using his words, what he is doing is, “shoot photos of ‘photos, in other words, someone else’s visions’ in the same way a photographer would shoot ‘flowers’ or ‘animals.’ With these art pieces, I try to capture what exists between indirect conceptual experiences and direct physical experiences.”

Also, as relevant activities in recent years, Mita has been introducing works that he develops to study “experiences,” by creating both imaginary/real adventurers representing “someone who carries out the experiences” in the style that follows the footsteps of his/her journey. In addition to presenting individual pieces, Mita actively works as a member of “Kosokeikakusho,” a group consisting of artists that create works as one unit. “Mujin (uninhabited) = Atopia” (2015) and “Doubtful Island” (2014) are a few of its creations.

Although working with a unique technique and in his own style (using photos as the base, but are not photos), Mita has been highly evaluated in the world of photography. He received the Grand Prize of the Tokyo Front Line Photo Award in 2014, Excellence Award of Canon’s “New Cosmos of Photography” in 2015, and the IMA Editorial Director’s Award of the Japan Photo Award in 2016. His works having a solid perspective are drawing attention from a broad audience.

Text by Masaru Nishiyama (Director of H-art Beat Gallery)
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