Lot 169
  • 169

Hiroshi Sugimoto

150,000 - 200,000 GBP
149,000 GBP
bidding is closed


  • Hiroshi Sugimoto
  • Lake Superior, Cascade River
  • signed on a label affixed to the reverse
  • gelatin silver print


Nouvelle Société Anonyme des Arts, Eschen
Acquired from the above by the present owner


New York, The Metropolitan Museum of Art; Houston, Contemporary Arts Museum; Shibukawa, Hara Museum ARC; Akron, Akron Art Museum, Sugimoto, 1995-98, p.
85, illustrated (edition no. unknown)
Madrid, Sala de Exposiciones da la Fundación La Caixa; Lisbon, Centro Cultural de Belém, Sugimoto, 1998-99, p. 173, illustrated (edition no. unknown)
London, Serpentine Gallery, Hiroshi Sugimoto, 2003-04 (edition no. unknown)
Tokyo, Mori Art Museum; Washington, D.C., Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden; Fort Worth, Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth; San Francisco, de Young Museum; Dusseldorf, K20 Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen; Salzburg, Museum der Moderne; Berlin, Neue Nationalgalerie; Lucerne, Kunstmuseum Luzern, Hiroshi Sugimoto: End of Time, 2005-09; p. 137, illustrated (edition no. unknown)
New York, Japan Society; Washington, D.C., Arthur M. Sackler Gallery; Toronto, Royal Ontario Museum; San Francisco, Asian Art Museum of San Francisco; Kanazawa, 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art; Osaka, National Museum of Art, Hiroshi Sugimoto: History of History, 2005-09, p. 287, illustrated (edition no. unknown)
London, White Cube, Dark Matter, 2006 (edition no. unknown)

Catalogue Note

Forming part of Sugimoto’s seminal series of ongoing depictions of seascapes, Lake Superior, Cascade River is a masterful display of the artist’s exploration into formal and subjective conventions of perception and representation. Conceived at night, with its flattened perspective and restrained colour palette, the present work in particular recalls the dark and glowing composition of a monochrome painting. Made using a long exposure, these intricately detailed works are at once recognisable as rippling sea and clear sky, but from a distance take on the formal qualities of an abstract painting. The distinctive sense of stasis inherent to these works presents the viewer with a universal sense of time and timelessness.

Well known for his meditative, black-and-white images that capture such diverse subjects as theatres, museum dioramas, the ocean, and wax figures, Sugimoto is one of the most celebrated photographers of his time. Although the artist has photographed distinct bodies of water across the world, the locations of the resulting works are identified only by their titles, suggesting an equivalence. Sugimoto began photographing seascapes in 1980 and has ever since compiled an impressive body of works documenting marine waters in all different corners of the world. As described by Thomas Kellein, these works concern "a comparatively acultural, anonymous-seeming phenomenon that nevertheless continues to define our perception: the marine horizon, an epitome of flatness, vastness and distance, and therefore of basic orientation. In photograph after photograph, the horizon line precisely bisects the image, dividing two basic elements that lie outside our visual scope—water and air—into two optically equal but identical halves” (Thomas Kellein, ‘An Art that Teaches No Belief’, in: Thomas Kellein, et al., Eds., Hiroshi Sugimoto: Time Exposed, Stuttgart 1995, p. 10).