Tom Delion // A view from Umeda

08_Tom Delion copy

Tom Delion

is a documentary based photographer from South-East London. 

He makes work about living in London with a particular emphasis on issues concerned with change and belonging.

He has also spent time around the world exploring these ideas in locations such as Nepal and Japan.

 A View from Umeda

A View from Umeda is a series of photographs taken over one day and night in the central station of Umeda in Osaka, Japan. The series, which is composed of three images, is about a way of looking at a part of the Japanese urban environment that is usually only experienced fleetingly. By capturing the figures in these images as they are caught in transit at the busiest station in Western Japan, Tom Delion is presenting a snapshot of ordinary Japanese life.


 He is also showing that a space of transit, somewhere you pass through, not your destination, can be compelling and extraordinary. The first two images in the series present different forms of activity that you would usually associate with this space; a birds eye view of commuters waiting at the platforms and taxi’s queuing to collect new arrivals. 

These photographs suggest something about the hyper-organised, fast paced city life in Japan, everybody serves their function, from salary men to security guards. Or this at least is the view of the artist, that the station could be considered a microcosm for a conformist society where people understand their purpose and everything runs like clockwork. The last image usurps this, suggesting something about those that live on the fringes of this society. Two figures are seen taking the time to smoke whilst conversing, there isn’t the same sense of urgency about them as with other commuters in Umeda. The smart nature of there clothing juxtaposed with the casual way they stand makes the men seem almost shady. Weather or not these men are associated with the Mafia is not known, but the suggestion is that if the station is a microcosm for Japanese society and the commuters seen from above represent your normal citizen, then these suspicious characters are the figures that operate outside of the system, moving at their own pace, making the rules rather than obeying them.

The relevance of this instillation at 139 Art Space is in the location of the Gallery. The windows that these images are presented in are often seen momentarily by passers by in their cars. There is a symmetry then of people in transit viewing these photographs of commuters at rush hour on the other side of the world.

All photographs were taken on location in Osaka, Japan, 2017.

Hand-printed by Tom Delion in Woolwich, London, 2018. 



In addition to the window installation by Tom Delion we are happy to show four paintings by Lex Campbell during the private view!

Lex Campbell

Born in North America, 1990. Residing briefly in Texas, Alaska and Alabama Lex has lived much of her life oversees, Azerbaijan, Switzerland and Egypt. She is currently based in Greenwich, London.

Painting is not just a passion, more a connection between her and the viewer. With no formal art education, the journey started and continues without the shackles imposed with formal training. Free of this, Lex initially explored watercolours and acrylics before moving to oil based paints, only two years ago.

In this debut exhibition Lex shares her latest work: “Noise”

Exploring contrasts in rich colours and metallics.

Gold is the statement and signature my work. The linear brushstrokes lead your eyes through the painting.”


photos by James Alexander

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