Keiichi Ito in #47 Mizu:
“I especially like this haiku by Matsuo Basho:
A frog leaps in,
The sound of the water
What is the meaning of this haiku?
The sound of a frog jumping into a silent old pond enhances the silence even more.
This is a common interpretation.
When I encountered this haiku again at the beginning of my career as an artist using photography, I was able to add a different interpretation to it.
I could imagine how the ripples spread on the silent water surface, how these ripples reach the shore, reflecting and interfering with each other and then finally disappearing. It was as if ripples were created in my mind by a pebble thrown into my heart.
The ripples are the pulse from a silent subject and they are the message concealed within the subject.
"The Silent Pulse", the underlying theme of my photographic work, was born from this interpretation.” - 6 June 2021, Keiichi Ito
The works of Keiichi Ito (Tokyo,1950) represent a sense of will and eternity. According to Ito 'an existence of sense of will has a strong connection with people who also hold life. Its eternity is a breath of hope that would become a vitality for tomorrow.'
Ito's subjects are nature and artifacts that passed through time. Artifacts are the opposite of nature but through the sharing and passing of time with people, he feels the sense of will and its eternity in them.
Ito prints his photographs on washi, a traditional sort of paper made from the fibres of the gampi tree. He purchases the paper in the city of Echizen, where it is handmade by artisans with techniques that have been passed on from one generation to the next for 1500 years. Because the paper is not suitable as photo paper, Ito treats it with a special emulsion. His prints are either platinum palladium prints or toned gelatin sliver prints.
Ito places his subjects in the centre, he sometimes tilts the image and plays with shadow and light. He also uses longer exposure times to capture the passing of time resulting in deliberate partly blurry photographs.