A Geisha's Journey: My Life As a Kyoto Apprentice

Overview

This is the story of a contemporary Japanese teenager who, in a search for an identity, became fascinated with the world of geisha, and discovered in herself the will and the commitment to embark on the many years of apprenticeship necessary to become one.

It is also the story of a young Japanese photographer who grew up overseas, and who also was captivated by the traditional lives of these women who choose to dedicate themselves to their art. He began following and documenting...

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Overview

This is the story of a contemporary Japanese teenager who, in a search for an identity, became fascinated with the world of geisha, and discovered in herself the will and the commitment to embark on the many years of apprenticeship necessary to become one.

It is also the story of a young Japanese photographer who grew up overseas, and who also was captivated by the traditional lives of these women who choose to dedicate themselves to their art. He began following and documenting the life of teenager Komomo as she studied and grew into her role.

Naoyuki Oginos photographs follow Komomos entire journey, from her first tentative visits after finding the geisha house on the internet through her commitment to the hard schedule of an apprentice, learning arts that go back centuries, all the way to the ceremony where she officially became a geiko, as Kyotos geisha are known and beyond. From the cobbled streets where she walks in her elaborate dress to the inner sanctums of her dressing room, these pages offer a rare look at a unique, living art.

The photographs are accompanied by autobiographical text and captions by Komomo, as she shares her thoughts and emotions, and describes the day-to-day existence of a Kyoto apprentice. It is an illuminating view of seven years in the life of a very special young woman.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"A Geisha's Journey is a captivating story of both will and serendipity, told through the lens of Naoyuki Ogino and the narrative of Komomo, a young girl determined to become a geiko. The International Herald Tribune
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9784770030672
  • Publisher: Kodansha USA
  • Publication date: 5/1/2008
  • Pages: 144
  • Product dimensions: 10.20 (w) x 7.50 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

NAOYUKI OGINO grew up in Tokyo, where he was born, and in Mexico. In 2006, he quit his job at Japans largest ad agency to pursue his career as a professional photographer. He has held a number of exhibitions in Mexico, Tokyo and many other Japanese cities.
KOMOMO grew up in Japan, Mexico and China before becoming a geisha's apprentice - or maiko in 2000. She became a full-fledged geiko, as geisha are known in Kyoto in 2005.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 1, 2008

    A reviewer

    I would certainly recommend this both for the beautiful images (there are lots), and the very interesting text that Komomo wrote, taking us through her states of mind over the course of her seven year apprenticeship.

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