Photographs by Yoshiyuki Yaginuma / Text by Jana Martin / Abbeville Press Publishers
In sacred temples and lush gardens throughout Japan, Yoshiyuki Yaginuma photographs cats because, he says, he and his camera are called by them. “I can’t explain the feeling of being called by a cat in any logical way,” says Yaginuma. “It’s just a feeling. The same way cats can navigate their way home, perhaps I can navigate my way to a cat.”
Whatever the reason, you’ll be glad this gifted artist succumbed to these beckoning Zenlike felines. His stunning black and white and color photos seize the labyrinthine spirit of the often-elusive cat, and the results are nothing short of sublime. Although lovely to behold on their own, these contemplative creatures possess a knack for placing themselves in the most scenic spots, amid serene gardens, stone statues, and ancient architecture.
Jana Martin’s brief glimpse into Japanese mythology and the feline’s place in this eastern culture perfectly compliments the photos, as does the inclusion of short poems by Zen disciples. Enlightened cat lovers are sure to give Yaginuma’s efforts the meditative meow of approval.