Joji Hashiguchi: We Have No Place To Be, 1980-1982

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Available here in a newly edited and expanded edition, We Have No Place to Be (originally published by Soshisha in 1982) veritably launched Hashiguchi’s illustrious 40-year career, and remains widely regarded as one of the photographer’s seminal early works alongside his first photobook Shisen ( The Look, recipient of the 18th Taiyo Prize in 1981). Supervised and edited by Hashiguchi himself, this omnibus edition comprises 139 black and white photographs, including more than 30 previously unpublished images. Printed in duotone with a matte finish, ”We Have No Place to Be: 1980-1982” provides a visceral window back into the eminently topical world featured within its 256 pages.

As society careened on a precipitous tilt, a generation of displaced youths fled their homes and schools, seeking refuge on the streets. Theirs was not only a flight, but a veritable fight against the stifling framework of an increasingly prescriptive life. In the early 1980s, Joji Hashiguchi similarly took to the streets of Tokyo armed with a camera, and began documenting these young compatriots in his debut work, Shisen. Before long, Hashiguchi would himself take flight – the Tokyo streets a runway for a larger world that beckoned outside Japan.

Recalling long high school nights spent listening to the Beatles, Hashiguchi first landed on the streets of Liverpool and London. Having encountered Christiane F.’s sensational 1978 autobiography, Wir Kinder vom Bahnhof Zoo (We Children From Zoo Station), he made his way from England to West Germany, traveling through Nuremberg and West Berlin. A budding Beatnik, he forayed even further West, at last arriving in New York. Over the course of his journey through these five cities, he sought to depict each through the youths that populated their streets.

Through his lens, we encounter an America exhausted by the Vietnam War. England under Thatcher, mired in rising unemployment and economic doldrums. West Berlin, on the frontline of the Cold War. Japan, erecting the scaffolding of her now labyrinthine bureaucratic society. Nearly four decades out, Hashiguchi’s We Have No Place to Be: 1980-1982 challenges present-day viewers to re-examine what we have both become and lost.

 

Title: We Have No Place to Be: 1980-1982. Liverpool, London, Nuremberg, West Berlin, New York and Tokyo
Publisher: Session Press, 2020
Author: Joji Hashiguchi, Yoshitomo Nara, Mika Kobayashi
Photographer: Joji Hashiguchi
Graphic Design: Kumiko Otsuka
Format: Softcover
Size: 29 x 21 cm, 256 pages
ISBN: 9780578429083
Edition: 1000 copies