Naoyuki Ogino grew up in Tokyo, where he was born in 1975, and in Mexico. He graduated with a degree in physics from Nagoya University, but wanted to pursue his dream of becoming a photographer while working for Japan’s largest advertisement agency. In 2006 he decided to quit and to focus full-time on his career as an independent photographer. In the same year he received the Grand Prix of the Japan Photographer’s Union. He participated in Pingyao International Photography Festival in China in 2007, as well as the Tashkentale Photo Festival in Uzbekistan in 2008 and Taiwan Photo in 2011. Since 1998 he has held several solo and exhibitions in Mexico, the U.S., Taiwan and other countries.
Ogino's latest series 'Shimmer of Vanir' was created during his residency in Norway in 2018 and pays tribute to the Nordic god 'Vanir'. With his handmade lens Ogino created ephemeral images so befitting the Scandinavian atmosphere.
Ogino’s recent works from 2016 are created with photography’s oldest printing technique, the salt print, on thin Japanese washi paper. The salt prints on show derive from different series, among others from Ogino’s series ‘Skin’ from 2015. With this series he has tried to visualise not only a feeling of presence of a female body, like a breath felt on their skin, but also a materiality through a rich texture in the print that touches the viewer directly and deeply. His other salt prints reveal the deep relationship Ogino has with the Japanese mystical traditions and religions, his images often airing an evanescent world.
In 2010/2011 Ogino created the series Womb of the Myth on the demise of movie studios in Japan. He has stated about this series:
‘I chose this sinking movie studio, a site just hanging by a thread, almost a myth in today’s culture and I am trying to seize in these uncertain moments of gravity. I feel as if I’m making these photographs on behalf of our sacred land. I have been taking these photographs in the movie studio at Uzumasa, Kyoto, Japan. In this work I have been searching for the seismic zones where today’s myths are fashioned through the handy work and breathe of professionals. I wanted to turn away from the banks or the companies with computers, and toward someplace with the sense of sacredness, where craftsmanship still guides the imagination. I found this place. This is not anymore the center of a vital industry; it is the last place where the practice of traditional Japanese movie craftsmen remains. This last citadel is now sinking. Last year, three studios disappeared, and the longest running traditional Samurai drama with 43 years of history was closed. But still in this place, I sense a gravity rising from huge stacks of used sets and their atmosphere. All of this has become a kind of simulacrum accumulating during the 60 years of recurrent construction and destruction that has played in the service of imaginal screens. What remains of the screenings, of the respiration of others is this simulacrum, this heap; this pile of the past that is at once empty an thick. What rests here, is more than the dust of storytellers, more than craftsmanship; what rests here is our ancient past, our gods and our future.’
In 2008, Ogino published a photo book A Geisha’s Journey: My Life as a Kyoto Apprentice, in which a fascinating rare glimpse into the life of a modern-day geisha is given through Ogino’s beautiful and intimate photographs of Komomo, a geiko in training.