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Weekend arts agenda: Yamamoto and Seto April 03 2009

In Haruki Murakami's short story, "Tony Takitani," the title character experiences discomfort due to his strange, foreign-sounding name (the Tony part). While it's true that Tony makes a relatively smooth phonetic translation into Japanese, the cultural estrangements of an Asian child of mixed descent are significant, even in the Land of the Rising Sun.

Masato Seto, whose newest series opens tonight alongside Masao Yamamoto at Jackson Fine Art, is a Thai-Japanese photographer who was raised in Japan by both Japanese and Vietnamese parents. As in the story mentioned above, Seto is particularly aware of "small groups on the edges of society."

More from Jackson Fine Art:

Masato Seto's series called Binran girls 2007 – 2008 was made in Taiwan at night of girls who sell betel nuts to passers-by in roadside stands open 24 hours. A particular part of Taiwanese and other south Asian cultures, the habit of chewing seeds produces a stimulating effect making the seeds popular with truckers as well as older members of the population who favor the seeds as a pick me up. These strident color photographs, shot at night with ample artificial light, project onto the young female vendeuses airs of loneliness and urban anxiety, though, according to the photographer, the majority of the glass framed stands are located in suburban neighborhoods.

Of course, the human interest angle can only stretch so far … Still skeptical? If so, take a moment to drink in the details on this photo by the show's other headliner, Masao Yamamoto.

The reception for both artists is tonight, April 3 from 6-8 p.m. Masato Seto returns for a gallery talk and book signing Sat., April 4 at 11 a.m.

For more local arts events, visit clatl.com/events or, check the weekly visual arts To Do Lists at BurnAway.org.

(Photo by Masao Yamamoto/Courtesy Jackson Fine Art)



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