Mikiko Hara was born in Toyama Prefecture in 1967. She graduated from Keio University in Literature in 1990 and Tokyo College of Photography in 1994, where she was also a research student until 1996. Hara has had numerous solo exhibitions and exhibited internationally in Europe and in Asia. “Hysteric Thirteen,” a photo-book of her work, was published in 2005 by Hysteric Glamour, Tokyo, and her work has been included in the international collection of the Bibliotheque Nationale de France. She is represented by Third District Gallery.
The work of Mikiko Hara is hardly a new discovery as she has been working prolifically and exhibited extensively since the late nineties. That period also happened to coincide with the rise of Japanese female photographers labelled “onna no ko shashinka,” usually translated into English as “girlie photographers.” However, to mention her name in that context is a misplaced generalization of her work, and like all generalizations an inaccurate typecasting of other Japanese photographers that happen to be female.
Her photographs, taken in color in the square 6×6 roll film format, are subtle snapshot observations of people in public. The viewpoint taken by Hara represents an open invitation to connect with those pictured individuals. We, the viewers, can almost read the thoughts on their minds.