Upcoming Exhibition
March 5 – April 25, 2015

Toshio Shibata Water Colors


Toshio Shibata - Water Colors

Laurence Miller Gallery is pleased to present Toshio Shibata: Water Colors, an exhibition of 23 photographs by this master landscape photographer, all celebrating the interplay of water and light. Taken between 2005 and 2014, using a large format camera, these images further Shibata’s career-long meditation on the intersection of man and nature. Long exposures transform water cascading down spillways into silk. Short exposures capture the rippling effect of wind skimming across a reservoir.

A persistent theme of Shibata’s work has been the exploration of a distinct dichotomy – although we see the powerful drama of natural forces competing against man-made structures, we also appreciate that these structures can exist in harmony with nature as well. In Imabari City, Ehime Prefecture (2007), a man-made river the color of pewter flows over a succession of waterfalls surrounded by a golden landscape. In Tsuyama City, Okayama Prefecture (2014), forest-green water reflecting the surrounding trees is bisected by a necklace of orange buoys.

Shibata’s pictures revel in water’s dynamic range, from turbulent to gentle, as it negotiates our attempts to guide its flow. Trained as a painter, Shibata brings an unerring eye for composition and color: streams of water seem at times like strokes flowing from a painter’s brush. Interestingly, the sky is never glimpsed directly in these landscapes, yet its spectrum of color, its moods and weather, are reflected across these picture’s liquid surfaces. As we see water flowing across man-made landscapes, it becomes clear that it is an element never mastered, only danced with.

Shibata was born in Tokyo in 1949, and at first studied painting and print-making. However, by 1979 he settled on photography as his medium. Shibata had his New York debut at the Museum of Modern Art in 1992, as part of their New Photography series. The Laurence Miller Gallery hosted his first one-person show here in early 1993, and has represented him ever since. Many museums around the world have featured Shibata’s work in solo shows, including the Tokyo Metropolitan Museum of Photography; the Sprengel Museum, Hanover; the Centre National de Photographie, Paris; and in the United States – the Cleveland Museum, the Art Institute of Chicago, the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago, and the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem. In 2012, the National Arts Center in Tokyo staged an expansive two-person exhibition of works by Toshio Shibata and the late painter Toeko Tatsuno.


Chichibu City, Saitama Prefecture, 2006
Chichibu City, Saitama Prefecture
2006

Grand Coulee Dam, WA, 2010
Grand Coulee Dam, WA
2010

Hamada City, Shimane Prefecture, 2009
Hamada City, Shimane Prefecture
2009

Hanno City, Saitama Prefecture, 2006
Hanno City, Saitama Prefecture
2006

Iide Town, Yamagata Prefecture, 2006
Iide Town, Yamagata Prefecture
2006

Imabari City, Ehime Prefecture 2007
Imabari City, Ehime Prefecture
2007

Juocho, Hitachi City, Ibaraki Prefecture, 2008
Juocho, Hitachi City, Ibaraki Prefecture
2008

KamikawaTown, Hokaido, 2009
KamikawaTown, Hokaido
2009

Kofu City, Yamanashi Prefecture,  2006
Kofu City, Yamanashi Prefecture
2006

Kofu City, Yamanashi Prefecture, 2014
Kofu City, Yamanashi Prefecture
2014

Koka City, Shiga Prefecture 2010
Koka City, Shiga Prefecture
2010

Nichinan City, Miyazaki Prefecture, 2014
Nichinan City, Miyazaki Prefecture
2014

Niimi City, Okayama Prefecture, 2014
Niimi City, Okayama Prefecture
2014

Nikko City, Tochigi Prefecture, 2008
Nikko City, Tochigi Prefecture
2008

Nikko City, Tochigi Prefecture, 2013
Nikko City, Tochigi Prefecture
2013

Okutama Town, Nishitama County, Tokyo, 2006
Okutama Town, Nishitama County, Tokyo
2006

Otaki Village, Nagano Pref., 2005
Otaki Village, Nagano Pref.
2005

 Otaki Village, Nagano Prefecture, 2005
Otaki Village, Nagano Prefecture
2005

Satsumasendai City, Kagoshima Prefecture, 2010
Satsumasendai City, Kagoshima Prefecture
2010

Tsuyama City, Okayama Prefecture, 2014
Tsuyama City, Okayama Prefecture
2014

Ukiha City, Fukuoka Prefecture, 2014
Ukiha City, Fukuoka Prefecture
2014

Wakasa Town, Tottori Prefecture, 2014
Wakasa Town, Tottori Prefecture
2014

Yonezawa City, Yamagata Prefecture, 2008
Yonezawa City, Yamagata Prefecture
2008

The chromogenic prints in the exhibition are available in four limited edition sizes: 4 x 5 inches, 20 x 24 inches, 32 x 40 inches, and 40 x 50 inches. Please inquire as to current availablilty and pricing for selected images.



Please inquire into specific availability and prices for all works on our website.
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