(日本語は下にあります – Japanese text at bottom)
In 2017 I began taking photographs of Japanese public housing apartments, known as Danchi. These iconic modern buildings emerged in the 1960s and 70s as a vision of a bright new Japan. For many people they were something to aspire for.
Half a century later Danchi are in decay.
The concrete symbol of Japan’s economic miracle and post-war identity are slowly being forgotten, and some are already gone.
THE PHOTO SERIES
I photographed Danchi at night, the time of dreams. I have visited over 40 complexes and observed both the signature of decline, and also the promise of the original dream of Danchi, however slight.
The story of Danchi reverberates with me deeply.
I want to show the form of these structures and tell their story.
From the original series I launched an exhibition and installation in May 2018 in Tokyo.
Together, with your support, I would like to do a whole lot more, including:
1. A 300 COPY LIMITED EDITION PHOTO BOOK OF DANCHI DREAMS
The 300 copy edition of the book will be printed and bound on high quality paper.
The DANCHI DREAMS photobook trim size will be 14" x 9-1/2", so it is the perfect size to show the scale of Danchi. The photobook will be in landscape format and open nice and wide. The book will be ~72 pages long.
DANCHI DREAMS is not just about buildings. Through the images it tells the story of the rise and decline of modernity in Japan. I think of this photobook as part architectural study, and part conceptual exploration.
I have been lucky enough to get access to photograph Danchi from the inside as well as the outside, including some locations that have already been slated for demolition.
I am passionate about capturing these buildings as they are now: looming concrete giants in the dark, because one day there will be no more Danchi and by then it will be too late.
Once the funding goal is met, I will organize printing of the photobook and engage the binders.
DANCHI DREAMS will ship by October~November 2018.
2. Limited Edition Prints
DANCHI DREAMS will be available as limited edition prints at A2 size, as well as smaller 8" x 12" editions. Print editions will be printed by my friends at Aflo Atelier in Tokyo.
WHO ARE YOU?
I am Cody Ellingham.
I am a photographer and art director living in Tokyo.
I grew up in a small town on the East Coast of New Zealand. I am deeply inspired by places and history.
I have a deep nostalgia for places locked in time. The aging skyscrapers of the city and the Arcadian forests of the mountain are both alike in that they are only a fragment of a myth that never was.
You can find me on instagram.
cityLab (The Atlantic): The Slow Decay of Japan's Modernist Dreams
Spoon & Tamago: A Photographic Journey Into Japan’s Public Housing Projects
Risks and challenges
Minimal risk. I have been working on layout for sometime already. I have been in ongoing discussions with book binders and printers about some of the finer details.
I have a background in graphic design and art direction and have been developing the technical side of the Danchi Dreams photobook since I began shooting the series.
Once the Kickstarter completes, I will engage the printers.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)