In Praise of Shadows

Jun’ichirō Tanizaki, the famous novelist,
wrote an essay
entitled In Praise of Shadows.
He laments the passing
of the somber and refined
Japanese sensibility he loves.

He delights in
“the moment of mystery,
the moment of trance”

He speaks of
the warmth of paper…
enveloping light
“like the soft surface
of a first snowfall”

He expresses
“We find beauty,
not in the thing itself,
but in the patterns of the shadows.”

Gail Rieke is an internationally recognized collage/ assemblage/ installation artist and teacher who lives and works in Santa Fe, New Mexico. She also publishes a monthly blog, ridetheflyingcarpet.blogspot.com. Gail has traveled to Japan many time over the years, and has co-led numerous tours with Steve Beimel.


  1. Gail. These photos transcend the real into the dream realm of the artist. I somehow missed this post when it was first published. Thanks for the ride!

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