, 2022-12-08 15:00:07,
In his new photobook, The Obsessed, Tokyo-based photographer Irwin Wong turns his lens on the intense all-consuming passions of Japan’s otaku “tribes” of ultrafocused subculture fans.
Japan’s Obsessions Go Global
In the age of streaming and online shopping, it’s easy to forget how Japan’s cultural exports were once far from accessible to much of the world. In the early 1990s, finding some anime to watch might require a trip to the video shop, while sourcing sushi ingredients could take a journey to the Asian supermarket.
But today, with almost anything from anywhere instantly downloadable or orderable, things considered alien and exotic have become ordinary. Mirin and miso are on the shelves of ordinary supermarkets. Words like kawaii and otaku have entered the pop-culture lexicon. Even the venerable London Times recently described an English politician as performing “Margaret Thatcher cosplay.”
In Japan, though, the kaleidoscope of subcultures is as dizzying and strange as ever. That is vividly recorded in Irwin Wong’s new photobook, The Obsessed: Otaku, Tribes, and Subcultures of Japan.
To take just three of the 42 subculture topics and individuals covered in the book, there are the tanganmen, people who wear one-eyed masks, the 1/1 Scale Model Club, who spent seven years making a full-size replica of a German armored vehicle, and Kobayashi Hideaki, also known as Sailor Uniform Grandpa.
To read the original article from news.google.com, Click here