Michael Wolf Tokyo Compression
Shinjuku Station is used by an average of 3.64 million people per day, making it the most crowded train stations in the world in terms of number of passengers.
I spent more than 60 weekday mornings photographing passengers during their commute into Tokyo. All portraits were taken at one train station along the Odakyu line, during rush hour between 7.30 and 9 am. At intervals of 80 seconds, a train already packed to the absolute limit pulled into the station. Even more people pushed their way into the compartments until the commuters were jammed like sardines in a can. Day in day out, millions of commuters must endure this torture, as the only affordable housing is hours away outside of the city center. Is this a humane way to live?
About the author
The focus of German photographer Michael Wolf’s work is life in mega cities. Many of his projects document the architecture as well as the vernacular culture of metropolises. Wolf grew up in Canada, Europe and the United States, studying at UC Berkeley and at the Folkwang School with Otto Steinert in Essen, Germany. He moved to Hong Kong in 1994 where he worked for 8 years as contract photographer for Stern magazine. Wolf’s work has been exhibited in numerous locations, including the Venice Bienniale for Architecture, the Sao Paulo Biennial for Architecture, Aperture Gallery, New York and the Museum of Contemporary Photography, Chicago. His work is held in the collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, the Brooklyn Museum, Museum Folkwang, Essen and the German Museum for Architecture, Frankfurt, the Heritage Museum, HK. He has won first prize in the World Press Photo Award Competition on two occasions (2005 & 2010) and an honorable mention (2011). In 2010, Wolf was shortlisted for the Prix Pictet photography prize. He has published 29 photo books.
Richard Mosse, Heat Maps, 2016
Mandy Barker, Beyond Drifting: Imperfectly Known Animals, 2015
Saskia Groneberg, Büropflanze, 2012
Beate Gütschow, S Series, 2004-2009
Benny Lam, Subdivided Flats, 2012
Michael Wolf, Tokyo Compression, 2008-2010
Munem Wasif, Land of Undefined Territory, 2014-2015
Pavel Wolberg, Barricades, 2009-2014
Rinko Kawauchi, Ametsuchi, 2012
Sergey Ponomarev, Europe Migration Crisis, 2015
Sohei Nishino, Diorama Map, 2010-2016
Thomas Ruff, ma.r.s, 2013