Code Unknown - Chapter 4 -
The right of portraiture and the right to privacy have been troubled issues among photographers. Furthermore, people who are being photographed are highly alarmed since the modern world has been improved with a network environment. In the movie "Code Unknown" directed by Michael Haneke who I love and respect --- there is a scene in which the maincharacter's lover who is a photographer takes candid photographs of passengers sitting in front of him on a train. I took photographs of the faces of people on a train in Berlin, in the same way as the character in the film. In real society, of course, I can not publish those photographs. Therefore, I photographed by aiming where each "model" cannot be identified individually. Then I edited them. I involved the effects of shadow made by direct sun light coming from the window, composition, and digital image processing to clear the issue of the right of portraiture. When a person looks at others, the appearances of those who are being looked at (face, body shape, behavior, what they are wearing and such) are expressed regardless of whether unconscious or conscious. In other words, a person is reading the information of others by various "codes". Shooting these photographs took several months. I was on a train in Berlin and transferred from one train to another from about 6 am to 8 pm. A wide variety of ethnic groups live in Berlin. A variety of languages are flying around on a train--not only German and English, but also Spanish, Turkish and many more. Since I grew up in Japan, I have a sense of a single ethnic country. It was like a diffused reflection of codes coming from all directions which will not be fused. This series is also an hommage (a tribute) to the director Michael Haneke.