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About the project „Sehnsucht“

Hiro Matsuoka

Back in April, as I was going through old negatives in my darkroom, the image of a swimming pool caught my attention. I took this photograph seventeen years ago, according to notes, on a warm summer day in Provence. From inside, through the wide open window, I saw abundant sunlight reflected on the surface of clear water, with small ripples caused by a soft breeze, or maybe by a loud concert of cicadas. A perfect afternoon to spend by the swimming pool.

„Sehnsucht“ is an art project to reflect on the state of mind of many people during the lockdown early this year, which changed our life unexpectedly and abruptly. A few weeks after the first shock, I noticed that we slowly began to feel emotional or psychological uncertainty about our work, life and future. We then became aware of what we were experiencing.

Confusion by the altered daily life, anxiety of the financial existence and desire for the normality are some of our mutual reactions to observe. With a small circle of my friends, with whom I kept contact during those straining days, I would like to give a visual form to such conditions of our minds.

A constellation of diverse forms and techniques of work that the artists of alternative photography bring together, should convey individual views to find the empathy. In this project, I would also like to exchange, discuss and develop our ideas with each other no less, despite the difficulties to meet in person.

The aim of the project is to overcome, by expressing ourselves, these unprecedented circumstances that we are still going through, simultaneously worldwide. We might have to make many compromises and do without sitting at one table, but we could also try other possibilities that modern technology can offer.

As a final goal, though, I can't imagine anything better than a real, brick and mortar exhibition, with photographs on the wall and a smile on everyone's face.

— Cologne, October 1st, 2020

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