Who are these watchers, and why are they watching? Japanese photographer Hitoshi Fugo’s photobook “Watchers” includes two series – “Waterfall” and “City” – with which he poses fundamental questions regarding the uncertainty and continuous change in photography and the act of looking. For “Waterfall,” Fugo photographed strangers from behind as they look at the Kegon Falls in Japan and the Niagara Falls in the United States; in “City,” the backs in the photographs belong to strangers looking at the cityscapes of New York and Tokyo.
“As you look at the various pairs of photographs and compare them repeatedly, they force you to become aware of the photographer’s role in each scene. What are the watchers in those photographs thinking in their minds while watching the waterfalls and townscapes? And, why has the photographer continued to photograph these watchers?” (from Toshiharu Ito’s essay “A Perspective View of Watchers”, included in Japanese and English translation)