Follow Us




Mount Fuji Through the Lens of Ōyama Yukio (Photos)
The many faces of the symbol of Japan

Ōyama Yukio (Photographer)[Profile]

On June 22 UNESCO formally approved Mount Fuji for inclusion on its list of cultural World Heritage sites, making it the seventeenth Japanese site on the organization's lists. Here we revisit a New Year’s slideshow of images of the mountain by Ōyama Yukio, a photographer renowned for capturing the beauty of this symbol of Japan.

Mount Fuji, at 3,776 meters Japan’s highest mountain, has bewitched people since ancient times. One of many to fall under the mountain’s spell is photographer Ōyama Yukio, who has spent nearly 40 years striving to capture it in all its various guises.

Enthralled by Mount Fuji’s Divine Beauty

Ōyama Yukio has built his reputation as the world’s preeminent photographer of Mount Fuji, which he describes as a “goddess with the power to enthrall a man.” His single-minded photographic pursuit of Mount Fuji began with his first visit in 1976. His work takes him on strenuous hikes around the mountain, carrying some 25 kilograms of equipment. He often spends nearly two weeks waiting for the perfect moment to press the shutter.

“You have to be patient,” Ōyama says. “Fuji is a whimsical mountain—she doesn’t show her best side right away. Basically you have to be a slave to the mountain. In rain, snow, or hot beating sun: All you can do is wait. But when that moment arrives, the mountain can offer a spectacle that is simply staggering. The thrill sends a shiver down your spine. I don’t know how many such moments I have left in my life, so I’m going to keep my camera trained on Mount Fuji to make sure no chance passes me by.”


Mount Fuji: Where the Spirits Dwell (Photos)


Mount Fuji’s Servant: Ōyama Yukio

  • [2012.01.02]

Photographer. Born in 1952. Has been photographing Mount Fuji since 1976. In 1985 moved to the village of Oshino in Yamanashi Prefecture, at the foot of Mount Fuji. Based since 1990 in the Fujigane section of Fujikawaguchiko, where he enjoys 24-hour views of Mount Fuji from his large living room window. Published works include Daichi no Fujisan (Mount Fuji from Ground Level). Received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Photographic Society of Japan in 2011.

Related articles