What we do


  • Section : Support for Projects Offering Visions for the Future
  • Type of Grant Program : Single


Tokyo Photographic Research (TPR) is a multifaceted exploration of the changing visual aspects of Tokyo ahead of the Olympic Games. Through the project’s research-based photographic works and the interchange of words inspired by them, the aim is to elicit new discourse on the city from common features and differences between diverse perspectives.
As a platform for experimental practices accompanying the expansion of methods in photographic expression, TPR focuses on image-making in contemporary culture and the current media environment, as well as on technological developments. The project champions artistic expression in which Tokyo is transformed through a visual language generated beyond the narrow confines of documentarism; expression from which latent aspects of the city and its people materialize. Until 2020 TPR will be chiefly web-based; thereafter the aim is to pass on the project in its entirety to future generations by archiving it in the form of publications and exhibitions.


Contemporary photography project Tokyo Photographic Research (TPR) was initiated by photographer Taisuke Koyama. From early on in his career he has focused on the phenomena and liquidity of the urban environment represented by Tokyo. In 2008 Koyama, who has a background in biology and natural environmental studies, released his photograph book “entropix” on the theme of urban metabolism and renewal. He spent four years or so working in London and Amsterdam under the Program of Overseas Study for Upcoming Artists supported by the Agency for Cultural Affairs. After his overseas stint however, he visited Shinjuku for the first time in two years, and was staggered by its townscape and bustle. He was also struck by the importance of making Tokyo his theme once more. After returning to Japan at the end of 2017, Koyama exchanged ideas and opinions with many people including TPR project partner-to-be, Junya Yamamine (curator of Contemporary Art Gallery, Art Tower Mito). In April 2018 the private organization Tokyo Photographic Research Project was formed in order to implement this initiative.