Tokyo Nobody: Masataka Nakano
There is something quite fantastic about Masataka Nakano's photographs. So fantastic they don't seem real. He records the city with a razor sharp eye so that every detail is preserved in these impeccable prints. Every spoke in the wheel of a bicycle leaning awkwardly against street posts is crisp and clear. Every piece of paper of the rubbish piled high above the bin; and even the cracks in the road come amazingly into focus. You can see the little green man symbol in the traffic light signaling to walk across the Ginza intersection. However, no one is there to walk. Nakano's Tokyo is clear of the clutter of people.
This stillness makes you slightly uncomfortable, but a Ginza or Shinjuku without the bustle of humanity allows you to concentrate on the details. Through this you discover things you never noticed before in the many times you've crossed those same streets.  
Nakano uses a large format 10 X 8 camera and apparently shoots these photographs from life at appropriate moments and he doesn't manipulate the images. There is an feeling that all the people have been grabbed by some monster wielding Photoshop. However, Nakano chooses the days carefully to be up early and ready to shoot the most populated spots in the city in the split second that they are empty.  
The unmistakable early morning glow of sunlight drifts around the streets and dark blacks fill the shadows of these beautiful Cibachrome colour prints. Nakano's photographic techniques are impeccable, but it is unfortunate that the tacky display of these photographs does not do his art justice. The crowded and chaotic exhibition diminishes the triumph of artistry in these superb photographs.  
Gallery Little Moore 3-3-24 Minami-Aoyama Minato-ku Tel: 03.3401.1042 (closed Mondays) -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- through September 8 Full review