Tomio Seike

Seike is primarily known for his black and white photographs handprinted in Japan, though he has also made landscapes in colour. His sensitive play on light and composition adds a serenity to his images which defines his style and adds a beauty to scenes of everyday life. Tomio Seike remains one of Hamiltons Gallery’s longest standing represented artists.



This contemplative body of work by Tomio Seike was taken in Brighton, from his holiday apartment on Marine Parade overlooking the sea. It marks a departure from his traditional black and white cityscapes, nudes and waterscapes conjuring an image of a bygone era.


"At first sight the viewer could be forgiven for assuming that the artist was a watercolourist.  Ironically so as the photographs represent a quantum leap for Seike in terms of technique - hurdling from black and white film to colour digital file in one bound. Yet in spite of the technical merits of their creation, they remain archetypically traditional.", Andy Cowan.


As a photographic requiem celebrating Seike's many years visiting Brighton, Overlook catalogues both daily and seasonal changes along the same stretch of beach. Each print sharply divides the land from the immense backdrop of the unpredictable sea. Seike brings a sense of calm and order to these nostalgic works, which hark back to early depictions of seaside solitude, particularly among the 19th century painters of coastal Normandy such as the romantic atmospheric effects of Courbet's seascapes and Whistler's interplay of figures beside the sea. The proportions also echo the traditions of photography rather than adhering to the fashion of scale that characterises so much of today's photographic based art.


"Tomio's seductive images can transport us through time and place - back to the foundation of a tradition and then forward to our own era: the search for a contemplative moment is an enduring one. The more the pace of contemporary life quickens, and the more crowded the spaces allotted for work and leisure become, our need to find that special moment beckons with ever-greater intensity.", David Peckman.


The series comprises of 40 prints, and was first exhibited in 2011 at Hamiltons. To accompany the exhibition a catalogue was published, including a forward by Andy Cowan and essay by David Peckman.