Nishiyama Onsen

@ Hashimoto, Shoko

N/A - AV0237


Excerpts from the text by Shoko Hashimoto :    [adapted by L'Ascenseur Végétal]

"Nishiyama Onsen was packed with pleasure trippers.

This healing hot spring is in the Yamanashi Prefecture, on a tributary of the Fuji River. People would come from nearby Yamanashi and Shizuoka, but also parties of local ladies returning from homes in the suburbs of Tokyo and Saitama and groups of local men, staying for 10, 20 days or sometimes a month of care or treatment.

Each year would see familiar faces come back to bathe, to sing, to dance and to eat and live together.

Nishiyama Onsen had a big bath with tiled walls inside a three storey wooden structure, and was packed with people taking their bath before bedtime. An empire of nakedness. In the morning bath an old lady lies on her belly enjoying the rising sun; after lunch in the bright sunshine a fat-bottomed madame sings "Oyoge-tai-yaki-kun"; a group of ladies belt out A Woman’s Virtue from Tonosama Kings. Bold battalions of butt-naked ladies in their 60s and 70s, youthful skin all dazzling white.

With a towel covering my camera, letting the lens acclimatize to the steamy atmosphere, I start my shoot!

« Hey you, photographer, sing us a song! » they say.

We get friendly after 2 or 3 days, I share a meal with them and get invited to their room for more celebrations. A week passed very quickly."

Text in English and Japanese. The English subtitle to the book is "An Empire of Nakedness", taken form the exhibition held at Zen Foto Gallery, Tokyo in 2014.

104 pages - Softcover in soft two-halves slipcase

Zen Foto Gallery, 2014 (500 copies)

Format : 21.5 x 28.3 cm

New - Mint condition

This book is no longer in stock


Hashimoto, Shoko

Shoko Hashimoto is a Japanses photographer born in 1939. He collaborated with Takuma Nakahira, Kazuo Kitai and Ihei Kimura. Hashimoto has published many books, including recently Nishiyama Onsen (2014) and Undergrowth (2016) with Zen Foto Gallery.
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