Chromed up, with individual artworks on their panels and lit up like Christmas trees, these Japanese trucks and their proud owners (with sharp eyes for detail), form part of a distinct sub-culture in Japanese society. The full color photographs, captured by Tatsuki Masaru in a project started in 1998, allow insights both into a personal and intimate world, and a unique aesthetic phenomenon.
Decotora - the book

About two or three years into the project, I realized that the trucks rather than the drivers were being overly emphasized in the photographs. Because if you don’t define your subject, the subject defines itself. So I started going to meetings where large numbers of truckers would gather. They were all very outgoing, and I gradually felt welcomed into their community. Then, I started to discover things I respected about them - and things I didn’t like. For the first time, I felt I really knew the truckers. I realized that they possess a sense of masculinity that is dying out in Japan. I could also understand their feeling of wanting to decorate the tools they use for work. People are surprised that I spent ten years on this project, but it simply takes time to really understand something. And I wanted to really understand the things I wanted to express. That is why it took so long.

Ten years in the making. Holy guacamole. Mad respect. :)

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Tags: art, culture, japanese

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Comment by sAm on June 12, 2008 at 2:51pm
HAHA....slot machines? Never, it's japan. They would have PACHINKO!!! Gotta love those little metal balls.
Comment by PANDA JU on June 12, 2008 at 2:41pm
Does it have slot machines?
Because that would be totally rad.

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