This October, Japanese photographer Keiko Goto will be exhibiting her hand printed silver gelatin photographs of Sakhalin. Goto photographed the Russian Island of Sakhalin, a harsh climate situated just 42km north of Hokkaido. Sakhalin has a complicated history of ownership and has been occupied by Russia since the end of WWII.
With a history of railways, coalmines and paper mills, the more recent foreign investment in natural gas projects is thrusting Sakhalin into a new sphere. Using a 1938 Leica gifted from her father at birth, Goto spent four years photographing the seasonal shift which alters the island dramatically.
Due to the climate’s heavy hand in determining lifestyle patterns, people live in harmony with the land. “You start to see mushrooms at markets and this is a sure sign of autumn arriving. The talk of the town is ‘when is the salmon coming up the rivers?’ People hurriedly dig up the potatoes and close the villas ready for the long months of snow. Gradually the sky starts to turn dark grey covering everything with snow and ice for 4 to 5 months.”
Goto’s photographs are honest, void of any attempt to try too hard. An unfamiliar and hard place, clearly photographed respectfully. Goto’s photographs will leave you wanting more.
1 – 30 October 2015
CF Gallery, 409-429 Gore St, Fitzroy, Vic, 3065
RSVP to the Facebook event here.