Ichi-go ichi-ge

Ichi-go ichi-ge

Tue 23 Jul 2019 9:08 AM



A Japanese four-character idiom (yojijukugo) that describes a cultural concept of treasuring the unrepeatable nature of a moment. Dating back to 16th-century tea ceremonies, where participants would meet to have tea together with the understanding that this exact ceremony will not reoccur in their lifetime and as such every encounter should be met with one’s fully attuned senses.


I was born in Japan, in the countryside, and from a young age I was always very interested in other countries. I was a hairdresser until I was 27 when I left that job and I chose to come to Italy.


When I was 21, there was a photography boom in Japan, everyone had a camera. My friend took a photo of our friends, at a friend’s birthday at the beach. I saw this photo, it was beautiful, and I wanted to take photos. I always used to say, it’s better to look. Now, everybody takes photos, but nobody looks. Photography immortalises the moment and that’s where I found my passion.



I do it because I like it. I can’t stop taking photographs.



In Florence, I like the lines. They’re really beautiful. I’ve travelled and Florence is beautiful compared to other places. I don’t like the cars, this is not particular to Florence, but I don’t like cars. If the car is beautiful, it’s fine, but they seem to destroy the beauty.


Ichi-go ichi-ge comes from the Chanoyu tea ceremony, the way you prepare green tea in Japan. This saying means that every meeting and every occasion only happens once in life. When you practise a tea ritual, everyone remembers that singular moment that only exists in the now.


Photography is important and it makes me remember that every occasion and every meeting is only a moment that needs to be immortalised to capture a feeling of beauty.

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