Japan: Between Rituals and Traditions

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Japan: Ritual and Modernity


Erminia Colucci’s current body of work, Ritual and Modernity, contrasts images of hallowed spaces with a frenetic subterranean world of man and machine. For example, in one image light falls revealing the delicate folds of a composition in paper hanging out of a shrine and, in another, a Shinkansen hurtles through crowds of anonymous faces frozen in a kaleidoscope of bright dazzling colour in a busy Tokyo subway. Insofar as these images are opposed in composition and content, they complete each other, whereby providing the subtext to explore the many contrasts of Japanese culture. However, Colucci never moralizes the value or worth of one over the other. Rather, her work evokes a dialogue that incorporates notions of continuity and practice, ritual and modernity. These familiar opposites are the bookends of an enduring conversation in culture and its representation.  [By Shawn Ashkanasy, Academic/writer].