Anton Kusters’ Photos of the Yakuza
For his Yakuza project, photographer Anton Kusters spent two years documenting some members of the Japanese mafia.
A limited edition of a book containing the photos is available. Steward Mag recently did an interview with Kusters:
The values were almost comparable to general Japanese workplace values, actually. Most yakuza gangs actually have neighborhood offices, and the plaques they have on the door state core values like “respect your superiors,” “keep the office clean,” and so on.
One thing I noticed early on with gang life was how subtle everything was. Everything was unspoken, and will was expressed through group pressure. A pressure was constantly there. There was this innate understanding of form — if someone did something wrong, no one would say anything; he would simply be expected to apologize. And the fact everyone would be so silent about it made the pressure really intense.