Independent professional artist and photographer specializing in exhibitions and photo books
”I spend my days in Hakodate wandering the city by night, lured by the light like a moth. Looking up every dark alley behind every corner to discover lightscapes clad in yet another color.”
For a number of years I have returned to Hakodate in Japan to photograph. I originally found the city in northern Japan purely by chance, when I was invited to the home of a friend who had moved back there after a few years in Tokyo. My friend is considered unusual in that he returned. Most of the younger generation abandons the smaller cities for the improved study and career opportunities of the large cities. Hakodate, which is roughly the same size as my own hometown Malmö in Sweden, is a typical example of how this depopulation leaves its mark. Entire blocks in the center are now uninhabited, and apart from the occasional car or a tram that whizzes by without stopping, the streets are empty.
On the day when my friend is working, I walk alone in an equally grey, quiet, and rather tired city where everything seems to have stopped. But in the evening, when the daylight has disappeared, I suddenly find that I am walking in another world. When colorful light flows from street lamps, traffic lights and neon signs to give me the impression that life is still going on. In this magical light, especially during twilight and from the shadows between the houses, it also seems to have taken on another, fairy-like almost spiritual form.
/ Christer Järeslätt
Christer Järeslätt’s photography is related to painting in the way he emphasizes color contrasts and builds his compositions on a balance of saturated color fields. The colors are the overriding factor in the images, which otherwise rest in a documentary tradition. He allows himself an abstraction that does not really differ in substance from that which describes the world in black and white tones – an otherwise established tradition in documentary photography. The colors are already in place, visible to the camera but harder to detect to the untrained eye.
Järeslätt obtained a Bachelors degree in photography at the University in Gothenburg after completing his preparatory studies in painting at the Art school in Halmstad. He has produced three books, Hakodate (2022), ToYuko – A Non Real Life Love Experience (2012) and Refricater, portraits of 60 Swedish creators of comics (2008).
Already from his very first trip to Japan in 2000, Järeslätt has had a special interest in the country and he has returned on several occasions, most recently during February and March this year (2023) and continues to build on and supplement his earlier material from Hakodate.
CV/Christer Järeslätt Born 1963 in Halmstad, Sweden EDUCATION Journalism, University of Gothenburg, 1997 BA in Photography, University of Gothenburg, 1992 SOLO EXHIBITIONS 2023 F2/BLACK DOOR GALLERY, Örebro 2023 Galleri Ping-Pong, Malmö 2022 Galleri Gustav, Malmö 2022 Galleri Ping-Pong, Malmö 2018 Scandinavianphoto, Malmö 2017 Fotogalleriet Blå Huset, Hörby 2014 Dunkers Kulturhus, Helsingborg 2013 FiF, Malmö Fotobiennal 2012 Malmö Museer 2010 Multeum, Strängnäs 2009 Arbetets Museum, Norrköping 2009 Kulturen, Lund 2009 Galleri Lilith Waltenberg, Malmö 2009 FiF, Malmö Fotobiennal 2008 Hotel Tylösand, Halmstad 2008 Swedish Embassy, Tokyo Japan 2006 Fotogalleriet, Visby 2001 Sydsvenskans Galleri, Malmö 2000 Hallands Länsmuseum, Halmstad BOOKS HAKODATE, Tira Books, Sweden 2022 TOYUKO, Snapshot Publishing 2012 REFRICATER, text: Carl Johan De Geer and Lilith Waltenberg, Sanatorium förlag 2008 GRANTS 2022 The Scholarship Foundation for Studies of Japanese Society 2022 Swedish Authors Fund 2020 The Swedish Arts Grants Committee 2018 The Swedish Arts Grants Committee Travel Grant 2017 The Swedish Arts Grants Committee Travel Grant 2012 Swedish Authors Fund 2011 Swedish Association of Professional Photographers Kavala Grant 2009 Swedish Authors Fund 2006 Association of Swedish Image Providers Grant 2005 The Swedish Arts Grants Committee 1995 The Swedish Arts Grants Committee
Christer Järeslätt Stormgatan 6 211 20 Malmö, Sweden