Auto-Graph Mar 14th – Jul 19th, 2020
Court Tree Collective proudly presents Auto-Graph by Tetsuya Kusu. These photographs were made during a life changing road trip in 2016. Documented and dated in the order they were made. They are moments from a visual journal mapped out in perfect color harmony.
ARTIST STATEMENT: I have been trying to understand myself by recording and saving moments that remind me that I am alive. Many different things have happened in my life - experiencing three earthquake disasters and two terrorist attacks, I have also had a few other close encounters with death, and I was homeless for three and a half years, mentally exhausted. It was surely a hard reset in my life. Going through all these things made me wonder why I am still alive today, and to me, recording my life with photography is exactly like taking portraits of myself.
In Autumn 2016, I bought an automobile and drove a few thousand kilometers along the West Coast of the United States in order to promote my newly published photobook. During the road trip, I installed a camera with a tripod in the front passenger seat in order to record the process. I kept the window open, faced the lens outwards and set the camera to an automatic program which would make the shutter go down every 15 seconds. It was important for me not to have control of the shooting process, since I wanted to do a pure documentation. All these auto-graphs have captured the whole process of the trip, and at the end of the each day I would pick an image out of the vast amount of automatically saved photographs, as a practice to recognize my own existence.
During this trip I witnessed how Trump was on his way to being elected as the President of the United States, and it made me strongly realize how the world is inevitably going to be changed. My road trip unfortunately had to end as I was rear-ended by another car. It once again reminded me how life is often determined by predestinated circumstances. Although I have been through several life-threatening events, I have been kept alive until today. As long as I am being kept alive, I would like to continue observing this life, full of intrigue and mystery.