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Chewing Gum and Chocolate

Photographs by Shomei Tomatsu

written by Shomei Tomatsu

Aperture | ISBN 9781597112505

Hardback – 176 pages

$100.00

Member’s price: $90.00
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Shomei Tomatsu, one of Japan’s foremost twentieth-century photographers, created one of the defining portraits of postwar Japan. Beginning with his meditation on the devastation caused by the atomic bombs in 11:02 Nagasaki, Tomatsu continued to focus on the tensions between traditional Japanese culture and the growing westernization of the nation in his seminal book Nihon. He originally named this series Occupation, but later retitled it Chewing Gum and Chocolate to reflect the handouts given to Japanese kids by the soldiers— sugary and addictive, but ultimately lacking in nutritional value. And although many of his most iconic images are from this series, this work has never before been gathered together in a single volume. Leo Rubinfien contributes an essay that engages with Tomatsu’s ambivalence toward the American occupation and the shifting national identity of Japan. Also included in this volume are neverbefore- translated writings by Tomatsu from the 1960s and ’70s, providing context for both the artist’s original intentions and the sociopolitical thinking of the time.

Artist: Shomei Tomatsu

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