With his 2022 photobook “Tokyo Superdeep Borehole,” Okayama-based Hong Kong-born artist Eric tries to probe below the surface of the people and scenes he encountered and photographed. In street snaps and imprompto portraits, Eric captures scenes and people, most likely randomly encountered, with immediacy and compassion. Each of the shots creates its own little world, and though visually ordered, everything Eric captures in his shots looks a little more sanguine, a little more “alive.”
“Today, the Japanese people unconsciously internalize and apply a communal illusion—the notion that Japanese people are this and that—to themselves, and such illusions appear most apparent in the cities, especially Tokyo …
The surface of people and the scenes created by people sometimes reveal the communal illusion that transforms with time, and those surfaces from the past have become a stratum that sinks from the surface of the earth down to the far bottom. “Roots” grow from the things on the surface of the earth, penetrate through the stratum and continue to grow as deep as they can.
I feel as if I have caught a glimpse of the “roots” of the Japanese people in these photographs.”
― from Eric’s afterword (included in Japanese and in English translation)