Everett Brown Photography Exhibition “Seeking an Open Life: Photographs of Lafcadio Hearn’s Japan”

Everett Kennedy Brown is an author and collodion photographer. He was born in Washington DC, and has lived in Japan since 1988.

Brown has been taking photographs using the collodion process since 2011. This process involved the use of a large-sized camera, and imaging on wet plates, as opposed to film. It is called a “modern classic” method, and uses the same process as was used at the time of the arrival of the Black Ships in the closing days of the Shogunate. It is an extremely rare photographic process. The photographs, which show the timelessness of Japan, are typical of Brown, the photojournalist and debater of Japanese culture. They are beautiful in their depiction of Japanese culture and the Japanese spirit. Brown continues to communicate this charm to the world.

Hearn feared the disappearance of Japanese culture and wrote about his concerns 130 years ago. His works resonated with Brown, who came to Japan 30 years ago, and their activities have similarities. They both came from overseas, and developed an empathetic understanding of the Japan they encountered. This exhibition is an excellent opportunity to show the people of the USA the charms of an unknown regional city in Japan.

Brown has held photo exhibitions in the USA before. However, this time, the exhibition will be held in The Historic New Orleans Collection in New Orleans, which is a friendship city of Matsue, the city Hearn loved so much.

The exhibition will focus on scenes from the Izumo region which have connections with Hearn. The photographs will be printed on traditional Japanese paper. The collaboration with paper artisans will further reflect and express the depth of Japanese culture. A speaking event is also scheduled.

“Lafcadio Hearn was a cosmopolitan, a man of many cultures. The images in this exhibition are a tribute to that Open Life that Hearn exemplified in his life and work.” (Everett Kennedy Brown)

10th October, 2019–5th January, 2020

The Historic New Orleans Collection

The Hearn Society
The Historic New Orleans Collection

Matsue City

Japan Club of New Orleans
Japan Society of New Orleans

Embassy of Japan in the United States of America
Shimane Prefecture

Toshiba International Foundation
The Japan World Exposition 1970 Commemorative Fund

The 25th anniversary of the friendship cities between Matsue and New Orleans

Everett Kennedy Brown

Everett Kennedy Brown was born in Washington D.C. and is a twenty-eight years resident of Japan. Formally the Japan bureau chief of European Pressphoto Aency (EPA), he at present works on commissioned photographic projects to promote Japanese culture. Using the wet plate collodion photographic process, first developed in the mid-19th century, his photographic work exhibits a timeless quality and has appeared in the world’s leading media, including CNN Style, NHK television, National Geographic, GEO, The New York Times, and has been exhibited at museums internationally and at the DAVOS World Economic Forum meetings. He also writes books in Japanese, including his most recent, 『失われてゆく日本』 (Shogakukan Publishers, 2018), and Japanese Samurai Fashion (AkaAka Publishers, 2017). Everett regularly gives lectures, teaches photography workshops and has presented talks at the TED conference. He is a member of the IBM Business Leadership Forum and is a recipient of the Japanese Government’s Culture Commissioner’s Award for promoting Japanese culture through his work as a photographer. He is presently making a photo book shot in Matsue in homage of Lafcadio Hearn.