Affinity & Influence: Klein + Moriyama at Tate Modern

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Affinity & Influence: Klein + Moriyama at Tate Modern

As all eyes of the art world are in rapt attention of London for the annual Frieze Art Fair, Tate Modern has seized the opportunity to premiere its latest exhibition. William Klein + Daido Moriyama is a massive double retrospective of the American photographer and his Japanese contemporary. The show is a contemplation—a comparative study—of the obvious affinity between the artists’ shared visual aesthetic. While they are independent in voice and ultimate expression, the artists are like-minded. Both implore the imperfect and create a sense of chaos, agitation and urgency with their blurred, grainy photographic style. With the major metropolises of New York and Tokyo as their muse/wretch, Klein and Moriyama excavate a truth—a beauty—in the locomotion of street life, as revealed through its flaws, dearth and seemingly perpetual nightfall. William Klein’s intuitive work, with its in-the-center-of-it-all feel and in particular his highly seminal photo-book, Life is Good and Good for You in New York: Trance Witness Revels, were of the many threads of inspiration that informed Moriyama’s style.

The Tate Modern exhibition includes the display of large-scale reproductions of many of the pages right out of New York and the issues of Provoke, a magazine in which Moriyama disseminated his pictures. In addition, the show features images spanning the entirety of both bodies of work, borrowing from Moriyama’s Japan: A Photo Theatre and Farewell Photography as well as Klein’s film work and his fashion photography while working with Vogue.

William Klein + Daido Moriyama @ Tate Modern
Now through mid-January 2013.

Daido Moriyama Ominato (Small Colour Portfolio) 1974 © Daido Moriyama

William Klein School out, Dakar, 1963. Painted contact 1998 © William Klein

Daido Moriyama Yokosuka (Small Colour Portfolio) 1970/1999 CORE © Daido Moriyama

William Klein Candy Store New York, 1955 © William Klein

Daido Moriyama Marine Accident (Premeditated or not 5) 1969 Tokyo Polytechnic University © Daido Moriyama

William Klein lsa Maxwell’s Toy ball Waldorf Hotel, New York 1955 © William Klein

Jamie Maleszka
Jamie Maleszka
Jamie Maleszka is a freelance writer born, bred and based in New York City. She has been contributing to Leveled since 2012.
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