After publishing a photobook trilogy about dancers in Japan in 2000 and 2001, Yoshiichi Hara found new inspiration in the carnival of Rio de Janeiro.
Hara, exhausted and feeling inadequate in his daily life in Japan, discovered a new kind of joy. He began to watch Brazilian films, learned about life in Brazil, studied Portuguese and eventually obtained a passport and hopped on a plane. He ended up visiting the carnival in Rio de Janeiro four years in a row, as if addicted, as if saved by it. The book ‘The City Where I Saw The Angels’ is a photographic record of his time spent with the samba team Manguelea and the carnival-obsessed people of Rio de Janeiro.
“Tears suddenly came to fill my eyes. I first believed the dancers in the carnival were the angels, but all the other people I met, like the man who helped me at the metro station, or the women, the children, and everybody who stood in front of my camera lens could be no one but all angels to me in this Miracle City.”
— from Yoshiichi Hara’s afterword (included in Japanese and English translation)