「上海蒐影」 松永泰明 

「Finding Shadow of Shanhai」  Taimei Matsunaga



The first time I visited Shanghai was about 2 years ago.  My objective was to do a shoot of lakeside districts in the surrounding area. On my way to the airport to go back to Japan, the scenery I saw from the car window left strong echoes in my heart. There were ruins of residential houses floating in the valley of high rises.  I have always been fascinated by what I call "the shadow of modernizing cities" and I have been shooting the world that comes up to the surface like stains. I became certain that the photo subjects I have been searching for was the bare and dirty living of the people who are the inhabitants of this area.

A few months later, I came back to the same area, the imageries had been stuck like it was printed on the back of my eyes. Half of the buildings were already torn down mercilessly. It was due to the city's redevelopment plan for the EXPO, which was to be held in May of 2010. I was told that the redevelopment was in progress all over the city, so I decided to shoot the city before the area gets completely dismantled.

Just when I thought I found my subject, it was dark already. As I set my foot in, unique mixed up odor of garbageand spices, etc. find their ways into my nose.

City lights do not reach here; wrapped up in thedarkness of black night, I felt as if I was entering a different world. People were still living in this time and space, quietly and strongly, knowing that their area will be destroyed in the near future.

An old man who showed me his house told me that negotiation between house-owner and the government had reached an agreement and he had to leave his house soon, where he had lived for a long time. He was not complaining about his situation. He was not angry. He seemed as though he was living as just another person who understands the Tao's "law of nature." When I visited the place again during EXPO, the place has turned into a highway bus center and a big road consisting of 3 lanes and the city lights had spotlessly illuminated the entire place.

There are people who are left out from rapid changesof to-be-future-cities, there are people who have nothing to do with gigantic flows of China. They live "right here and right now" which is something undeniably real, there is something overwhelmingly powerful in their simple philosophy. They have been labeled as "debts" with novalue to add and they are told to fade away. Something at the bottom of their humanity lured mevery strongly. So I printed their eyes on my films.