In March this year, the esteemed photographic cooperative Magnum Photos ran another Magnum Tokyo workshop, a project they began in 2013 in collaboration with the Nippon Photographic Institute. The five-day workshop was led by Magnum photographer Jacob Aue Sobol, who mentored the students and selected Taro’s work as the winning submission.
“I gave Taro the prize because he was honest,” Jacob told the British Journal of Photography. “Working as a salary man, but longing so much to explore the core of his existence. He started a search within himself, using the camera as a tool to express his own inner life.”
Taro’s pictures depict the harshness of Tokyo urbanity through portraiture with a ‘soreness and honesty’ that didn’t seek to find answers, Jacob asserted, but to ask questions.
Taro explained to the British Photographic Journal that he saw Tokyo as an organised utopia where desires could be satisfied, yet is was also a dystopia, “filled with something threatening. Loneliness, tiredness, depression, and void. I wanted to capture those feelings of entrapment that appear and disappear in the city.”