Skip to Content
Showing 1 of 1

Kyo Koike


Glacier Inferno

Bromide print
16 x 19 x 1 in.
Gift of the Kathryn C. Wanlass Foundation

Much of the work of Dr. Kyo Koike reflects his love and reverence for Mount Rainier, in his adopted home of Washington State. Koike, an avid mountain climber, saw the mountain as the spiritual counterpart to his beloved Mount Fuji, in his native Japan. The contradictory title of this photograph refers to the massive glacier on the mountain, which in reality is a large, active volcano. The ice formation suggests lava owing down the sides, creating a web of abstract patterning that acts as a foil for the silhouetted figure in the foreground. In many of his landscapes Koike included human figures, usually his photographer friends, to illustrate the scale of his majestic subjects and convey the insignificance of humans in relation to these formidable manifestations of nature.

A founding member and guiding force behind the internationally acclaimed Seattle Camera Club, Koike was the most-exhibited pictorialist photographer in the world by the early 1930s, when this image was created. A tireless supporter of art photography, he wrote numerous illustrated articles for prominent publications such as Camera Craft, Photo-Era, and American Photography. As a physician and surgeon he had the financial means to practice his avocation through the difficult years of the Great Depression.

A published poet as well, Koike likened his photographs to the disciplined poetic forms of haiku and tanka, where, through an economy of words, deep meanings are expressed succinctly. His spiritual connection to Mount Rainier was so profound that he had his ashes spread among its foothills, in the landscape that nourished his soul and inspired his creativity.

David F. Martin

Click a term to view the records with the same keyword
This object has the following keywords:

Exhibition List
This object was included in the following exhibitions:

Also found in
Click a portfolio name to view all the objects in that portfolio
This object is a member of the following portfolios:

Your current search criteria is: Keyword is "V" and [Objects]Artist is "Kyo Koike".

This site facilitates access to the art and artifact collections by providing digitally searchable records for thousands objects. The information on these pages is not definitive or comprehensive. We are regularly adding artworks and updating research online. We welcome your comments.