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SHOJI UEDA OFFICE
SHOJI UEDA MUSEUM PHOTOGRAPHY
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SHOJI UEDA
Chronology
1913 Shoji Ueda was born on March 27 in SaihakuCounty, Tottori Prefecture, Japan. His father, Tsunejuro Ueda, was a clog maker in Sakaimachi (now known as SakaiminatoCity). Shoji was the third of four children of Tsunejuro and his wife, Miya, but his elder brother and younger sister died early, leaving him the only son.
1919 Ueda entered SakaimachiElementary School.
1922 Ueda in grade-school years was fond of language class and often assigned to recite textbooks, but not good at mathematics. In the third grade, he first used crayons, which led him to enjoy drawing class.
1923 Ueda found that a neighbor young man was printing photographs in his living room converted into a dark room by covering a light with a red cloth. Ueda was extremely attracted to the process in which an image came up from a blank paper.
1924 He became a fan of illustrators whose works were published in boyfs magazines such as Shonen Club (Boyfs Club), Shonen Sekai (Boyfs World) and Nihon Shonen (Japanese Boys). His heroes were Kasho Takabatake, Shokichiro Yamaguchi, and Hikozo Ito. Ueda especially liked Kashofs illustrations.
1925 Ueda entered TottoriYonagoJunior High School.
1928 As his interest in photography became more intense, he could not stop expressing it all the time. Once he was scolded by his teacher when reading a photo magazine during class. Ueda bought a ceramic plate for developing vest-pocket size prints. One day Uedafs father found his son was absorbed in contact printing from 4.5x6cm plate in a kitchen closet, and gave him a severe scolding, saying that do not indulge in such a ehobby.f
1929 Uedafs father came to understand his sonfs serious interest in photography and bought him his first camera (4.5x6cm format, Japanese product).
1930 Ueda intended to go to an art school in Tokyo to become an oil painter, but it was objected by his parents because Ueda was the only son to succeed his family business. Instead, the parents bought him a high-class camera, Piccolette with a fixed F4.5 Tessar lens (4.5x6cm format).
1931 Graduating from TottoriPrefecturalYonagoPublicHigh School, Ueda became more involved with photography, joining Yonago Shayukai (Yonago Photography Circle). Around that time, a special issue of The Studio magazine titled Modern Photography (fall, 1931) containing many European avant-garde photos were a strong stimulus. A Boy on the Beach received the monthly award of Camera magazine (December issue), which was the first prize of Uedafs career.
1932 At the photo studio of Mimatsu Department Store in Hibiya, Tokyo, Ueda received photography training. Later he was enrolled at the Oriental School of Photography for three months. After his return to Tottori, he opened his own photo studio. In August, Suidobashi Landscape won a special commendation at the Nihon Koga Kyokai (Japan Photographic Society) Exhibition at Karasuma Chamber of Commerce, Kyoto, which led Ueda to join the association. The award-winning photo was taken during his stay in Tokyo.
1933 Ueda was instrumental in the founding of a local photographers circle in Tottori, the Nihonkai Club (Japan Sea Club). He began to enthusiastically enter into monthly contests of photographic magazines such as Asahi Camera and Photographic Salon.
1935 Ueda married Norie Shiraishi. Noriefs strong support allowed Ueda to concentrate harder on his photography.
1936 Ueda worked on a series using back-lighting effects. Silhouette, taken with this technique, won first prize (third rank) of the Special Anniversary Awards of the magazine, Photographic Salon (Special Enlarged Issue, June).
1937 In February, invited by Ryosuke Isizu, Ueda became one of the founding members of the Chugoku Shashinka Shudan (Chugoku Photographers Group). The group held annual exhibitions in at Konishiroku Hall in Tokyo for four years until 1940.
Hiroshi, the first son of Ueda, is born.
1938 Kazuko, Uedafs first daughter, is born.
1939 In September, Ueda presented his first art-directing photo, Four Girls in the third exhibition of the Chugoku Photographers Group. In December, it received a special prize at the 13th Exhibition of the Japanese Photographs hosted by Mainichi Newspapers (Ginza Mitsukoshi Department Store, Tokyo).
1940 Mitsuru, Uedafs second son, is born.
1943 As WWU took an ever greater toll on peoplefs lives, Ueda was conscripted for military service at the Hikari Navy Yard in Yamaguchi Pref., but was immediately sent back to his hometown due to malnutrition. On later occasion, he was again called up but returned on the same day, as had happened once in 1938.
1944 Toru, Uedafs third son, is born.
1945 After the end of the war in the summer, Ueda came across an article in the Osaka Asahi Shimbun (Osaka Asahi Newspaper)that December announcing a public contest by the Asahi Shashin Tenrankai (Asahi Photograph Exhibition), which made him feel for the first time since the war that he was returning to life as a photographer.
1947 Ueda joined Ginryusha, a photographers group, together with Yoichi Midorikawa.
1949 Ueda, Ken Domon and Yoichi Midorikawa participated in a competitive photo session at Tottori Sand Dunes in an editorial project conceived by Kineo Kuwabara , then the editor in chief of Camera, which was covered in the September issue of the magazine. Uedafs photo series, My Family, was also featured in its October issue.
1950 Around this time, the Etan-ha (Etan school) was formed by Ueda and young photographers from the San-in region who had been meeting at Uedafs house.
1951 In autumn, Ueda did his first nude photo shoot at the Tottori Sand Dunes.
1952 Ueda took photos of Japanese folk handicraft implements and compiled them in Series <Form>
1955 Ueda became a member of the photography section of Nikakai (Nika Association). He started taking shots depicting innocence of local children in his native San-in region for Series<Children the Year Around>.
1971 Warabegoyomi (Children the Year Around), the third volume of Eizo no gendai (The Present of Images) published by Chuo Koronsha make people reconfirm of the importance of Ueda in the Japanese photography industry.
1972 Ueda opened a new studio, Ueda Camera, in a three storey building in Higashi Kurayoshi-cho, YonagoCity, Tottori. He also opened a tea room, Charanka, on the second floor and Gallery U on the third. Local amateur photographers, who looked up Ueda, got together in these spaces and formed a photographers group,
CircleU.
1975 Ueda took up the post of photography instructor with professor status in the faculty of Fine Arts at KyushuSangyoUniversity (1975-1994).
1978 In July, Ueda was invited to the ninth ARLES RENCONTRES DE LA PHOTOGRAPHIE (Arles International Photography Festival) in France and led one of the photography workshops. His works were added to the collection of the National Library of France.
1979 Uedafs works were shown at several exhibitions overseas including one at the BolognaModernArt Museum. Ueda became a part-time instructor in the Faculty of Education at ShimaneUniversity.
1982 From around this time, many galleries in Europe held solo exhibitions of Uedafs works.
1983 Uedafs beloved wife, Norie, died. Ueda began a series of fashion photographs, Series <Dunes: Mode>.
1984 Uedafs works were added to the collection of the KawasakiCityMuseum. Since then, many museums have added his works to their collections: Yokohama Museum of Art, Tokyo Metropolitan Museum of Photography, Yonago City Museum of Art, The Yamaguchi Prefectural Museum of Art, The National Museum of Modern Art in Tokyo, Centre Pompidou (Paris, France), The Museum of Fine Arts Houston (Texas, USA) ETC.
1987 Receiving enthusiastic applause for a film showing his Dunes series from 1950s and his latest fashion photos, Ueda was invited again to the 13th ARLES RENCONTRES DE LA PHOTOGRAPHIE in France. Ueda began taking color photos of still-life, using a multiple exposure techniques.
1992 Ueda used the dye-transfer process.
1994 The Ministry of Culture of France purchased 20 works of Ueda.
1995 In September, the Shoji Ueda Museum of Photography opened in Kishimotocho (now Houki-cho),SaihakuCounty, Tottori Prefecture, Japan.
2000 Ueda died from acute myocardial infarction on July 4.
List of References:

Noriko Tsutatani, ed. A chronology published in the exhibition catalog of Photographs by Ueda Shoji
(Tokyo: East Japan Railway Culture Foundation, 1993).Hiroo Ikegami, ed. A chronology published in 20 Japanese Photographers (Tokyo: Iwanami Shoten, 1998).