Festival: Gujo Matsuri

Dancers at the Gujo Festival in central Gifu.

The big brother/sister to the Shirotori Festival is the Gujo Hachiman festival just a few kilometres south in central Gifu.

It’s festivals like these that make the Japanese summer worthwhile and the humidity bearable.

Gujo Matsuri 2022.

Everyone is friendly – big smiles overflowing through their masks – and despite the summer storm and oppressive heat everyone danced. The line of went on and on ebbing and flowing throughout the whole town for hours and hours.

But go deeper into the mountains at the right time of year and more and more festivals will reveal themselves.

Video: I don’t like shooting video. That’s why this is a slideshow. With video there’s too much to think about and it feels too detached from the environment. You never get to fully immerse yourself in the experience when shooting video. (What exactly are those onlookers experiencing while recording Queen Elizabeth’s coffin passing by on their smartphones?)

Instead a stills camera, one or two lenses, and a simple sound recorder, for me, is just the right amount of equipment to enjoy the festival and create something I can remember.

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