Sessue Hayakawa, c. 1920
Tsuru Aoki, c. 1920
Taizo Kato (1887–1924) was born in Japan and immigrated to the US in 1906 at the age of 19. His influence on other photographers went far beyond his own pictorial photography—he also owned and operated The Korin, a business enterprise in downtown LA that encompassed a camera store, a film processing lab, and a gallery where photography was presented alongside ceramics and painting. Kato was a member of the artistic group Shaku-do-sha which developed close ties with Edward Weston, presenting his work throughout the 1920s in a collaboration that is generally regarded to have been a case of mutual influence. Kato's early death in 1924 meant that he never saw the full realization of his influence: the formation in 1926 of the Japanese Camera Pictorialists of California, a group of photographers based in Los Angeles’s Little Tokyo neighborhood.