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Satoshi Saikusa by Philippe Abergel


After two documentaries devoted to George Tourdjman and Frank Horvat, the series Portrait of a Photographer by Philippe Abergel returns. This third opus is dedicated to the Japanese photographer Satoshi Saikusa.

Born in Japan in 1959, Satoshi Saikusa moved to Paris in 1984. His photographic work is quite diverse, somehow difficult to apprehend because of its richness, inseparable from his art side as well as his constant campaigns for the fashion industry. As a self-taught artist, he improved his technique and vocabulary with commissions from Vogue, GQ, Harper’s Bazaar. His work deals with different themes – night, fragility, eroticism – and is distinguished by delicate, tree-like compositions that reveal a continuous reflection on metaphysical, literary and even spiritual notions.

Satoshi Saikusa’s work is multiple, his practice jumps from one genre to another and redefines itself series after series, image after image. Yet, nudes and still lifes reveal a subtile care for composition, placing his work in a pictorialist heritage, saturated with references, like his works currently shown at the Chateau du Riveau, in the collective exhibition La pomme, motif éternel, where the artist had exhibited an ensemble on the notion of sin in Christianity.


On Philippe Abergel 

“I have been a freelance photographer living in Paris for 35 years now. I have worked on assignments for major newspapers and directed advertising campaigns in France and abroad. I have been collaborating for about ten years with lots of publishing houses, and have to my credit 13 fine-arts books on Heritage and crafts (L’Elysée, Quai d’Orsay, Palais Farnese, Palais Thott…). Teaching photography at the EFET Paris XII School and at the École des Gobelins led me to think about transmission issue.

This series of documentaries is entitled Portrait of a Photographer, was born from this desire to pass on to the younger generations, and to photography lovers, what the life of a great photographer is, to have with a 26minutes long, his analysis on his profession, on his pictures and on the photographic idiom.

Photographers filmed and interviewed by a photographer is what interested me. As Georges Tourdjman said: “I love photographers, and I love photographers who live photography”. “It’s not easy to make a good picture, but when you do, then…”

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Satoshi Saikusa, a documentary by Philippe Abergel.
Editing: Philippe Abergel
Production assistant: Tim Grenard
Coordination : Nathalie Benchetrit
Production : Caméra16

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