Long before the sense of isolation that comes from self-quarantining became a common feeling to millions of people across the globe, I was making photographs that speak to the experience of being confined to an interior space, looking out on the world beyond the window, with longing.
In Fall of 2014 I was inspired in part by Photoville, to embark on a journey for photography and to reconnect with life, from which I had felt distant since my father had suddenly passed when I was in university, and I pursued a career in the business world in Tokyo and New York. I left all my possessions in storage, gave up my apartment, and journeyed for what became 990 days.
There is a Japanese word, nukumori, a lukewarmness that can refer to the presence of someone who occupied a place, but had departed: an empty chair, a tea cup, a potter’s work table, the inside of a bus or train car, and the many hotels, motels, and guest bedrooms where I found myself. Nothing in the series is staged, and the photographs were made from a sense of longing to connect with the life unfolding beyond the window.
George Nobechi (Japanese/Canadian b. Tokyo in 1980) graduated from the University of British Columbia with a degree in History. Upon graduation, he worked in business for over a decade, but decided in 2014 to pursue a pathway into photography.
He journeyed to the southwestern U. S. to learn the craft, and he worked on several photographic projects, including Here. Still.,which received international recognition including: Critical Mass Top 50, Paris Photo Silver Award, and an International Photography Award, 3rd Prize, for this series.
George’s work is represented by A Gallery for Fine Photography in New Orleans, Louisiana, and Patricia Conde Galeria, in Mexico City, Mexico, and is in the collections of the Detroit Center for Contemporary Photography, the Center for Creative Photography in Arizona, the Australian Museum of Contemporary Photography.
His work has been published in Huffington Post, Newsweek, PDN, and Lenscratch, among other publications. Exhibitions of his work have taken place in the U.S., Germany, Italy, Japan, Mexico, and Australia.
George currently resides in Tokyo, working on projects about having a bicultural upbringing in a homogeneous society.
Photoville is a New York-based non-profit organization that works to promote a wider understanding and increased access to the art of photography and visual storytelling by producing a free annual festival, amplifying impactful narratives, and connecting artists to a wide global audience by activating accessible public spaces via large scale exhibitions.
Proudly devoted to cultivating strategic partnerships and creative collaborations with community spirit, UPI approaches its mission of cultivating a wide, diverse audience for powerful photographic narratives by working closely with visual artists, city agencies, nonprofit organizations and educators worldwide to create new exhibition and public art opportunities that showcase thought-provoking, challenging, and exceptional photography. For more information about Photoville visit, www.photoville.com