Visiting Astuta Shrine. C-print, 1971, 7.9 x 11.6 cm, Yoshinori Iwai Collection.

In this photo Mr. Iwai is a month-old baby in his mother’s arms. With him are his brother and sister, and they are standing in front of the main hall of the Astuta Shrine for his Omiyamairi. This was his visit to the shrine for blessing after his first month. Astuta Shrine is a great tourist attraction in Nagoya and is well known for the Kusanagi-no-Tsurugi sword, a subject of worship. The gentleman on the right was on a business trip from Tokyo and was taking a break between his many meetings. He was ready with his camera but wondered why the legendary sword was mysterious and invisible. There wasn’t even a replica or an image available for him to photograph. He had decided to return later for another search.


「熱田神宮への旅行」、 C プリント 、1971年、7.9 x 11.6 cm、岩井良憲蔵

この写真には、熱田神宮の本宮の前で、お宮参りのために 母の腕に抱かれた1歳の岩井氏が、兄と姉と一緒に写っている。お宮参りとは、新生児の健やかな成長と長寿を祈願する日本の伝統的な慣習だ。熱田神宮は、名古屋のとても重要な観光地であり、草薙の剣を御神体として祀っていることでも有名である。東京から来た右の紳士は出張中で、なんども会議を休んでいた。カメラを準備していた彼は、なぜ伝説上の剣が謎めいて目に見えないだけでなく、レプリカや画像でさえ写真に写すことができないのか不思議に思い、もう一度探しに戻ることにした。

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