What kind of gaze does the city license? What kind of gaze does it induce, determine, inform, program, organise? What is the nature of the city as reality, as image and as symbol? What is this object of desire, at once near and ungraspable, fascinating and repulsive, attractive and intractable, necessary and unbearable, intimate and impenetrable, available and inaccessible, that it is for itself as well as for the man of the crowd, for the man in the street, for the man of the city, for those who inhabit it and those merely passing through it, for anyone who knows that it is a labyrinth but nonetheless allows himself to remain trapped in it?
— Hubert Damisch
Those are the final words of this luscious but unfathomable photobook by Japanese photographer Takashi Homma. Otherwise, the book is wordless and all image, with cracks and fades and texture like dreams half-remembered. This imagined city is made of bits and parts of cities around the world, a phantasm of urban sights, odd color, and large lovely photographs. If you are into the photobook as art object, this one may be for you.
The Narcissistic City
by Takashi Homma