Copyright ©Tomohide Ikeya  All Rights Reserved
Artist’s statement
Inspired by water's duality - life-giving and destructive - I explore its philosophical depths. Growing up in island nation Japan, surrounded by water from active volcanoes and frequent tsunamis, shaped my connection to this element. Shinto,my cultural heritage, views death as part of nature's cycle, much like water.
Underwater photography is a challenge. Limited movement, bubbles, light, and waves require split-second decisions amidst safety concerns. But chance encounters can create dramatic works - a testament to human curiosity and creativity in uncertain environments.
My art, influenced by ukiyo-e, Renaissance art, and sci-fi animation, reflects a subconscious fear of death intertwined with familiar culture. Bubbles in "BREATH" resemble stars, while "WAVE" evokes Hokusai's ukiyo-e with its minimalist background. 
Digital technology allows me to explore new mediums; The traditional material of fresco painting, plaster, is used and printed with UV ink to show how it hardens as it breathes.
Dancers, performers, and athletes like Kuroda and Yoshimoto become my underwater collaborators, their movements expressing the tension between life and death.
Through my work, I want to express the beauty of the contradictory existence of life and death in water, and the fragility and strength of human existence. Death is inevitable, but that is why life shines and is precious.


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