Go by Bruce Gilden at Guernsey Photography Festival 2016
Bruce Gilden digs beneath the surface of Japan's streets
Part of Guernsey Photo Festival 2016, Bruce Gilden presents, Go. Named after one of the most intellectually challenging board games in the world, Go presents Bruce Gilden’s photographic explorations of the darker side of Japan. In striking black and white images, Gilden documents the brutal reality of the Japanese street. In-your-face pictures of Yakuza (mobsters), Bosozoku (members of biker gangs), and street people — characters who are alternately intimidating, bloodied, tattooed, frightening, and dishevelled — are sporadically interspersed with manga cartoons for a revelatory glimpse at a Japan that looks nothing like its familiar image of calm, orderly, hyper-efficient perfection.
Arguing that many of the people in Japan wear a ‘mask of uniformity’, Bruce Gilden wanted to dig deeper to find persons who were both physical and intense and who, in one way or another, stood out from the others. Following this ambition at the end of the 90’s, Bruce Gilden presents another side of the traditional and often stereotypical view of Japanese society and reveals how violence and hardship weave through many aspects of the daily life of Japanese people.
Magnum Photographer Gilden has travelled and exhibited widely around the world and has received numerous awards, including the European Award for Photography, three National Endowment for the Arts fellowships, and a Japan Foundation fellowship. He is the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship (2013). He lives in Beacon, New York and is widely considered one of the most important street photographers of his generation.