"Women become sexy when they are bound" - Nobuyoshi Araki

>> Thursday, January 14, 2010


Nobuyoshi Araki, Japanese photographer, known for his often pornographic photography filled with sado-masochistic and feshitistic subtexts.

His images resemble crime scenes and make you wonder about the kind of life this man had growing up

Compare his images to those by Helmut Newton, the iconic photographer of the 80s and 90s, also known for his sometimes pornographic photography filled with sado-masochistic and feshitistic subtexts, and it becomes clear that great photography lies in the nature not so much of the image but the eye behind the lens.

Newton at work while his wife and colleague Alice Springs looks on

I love his work immensely. I once laboured over a three-month project in school that focused on him and his career and he made an indelible impact on my views on photography and imagery in general. He took inspiration from the strangest of places - there is this picture that I've spent hours trying to find, to no avail - it's of a woman in a fur coat with her back to the camera, gazing at a wall in front of which are several men, with their backs to the camera.

He was walking through Paris one day when he had to take a leak, and asked his wife to wait for him while he did so, against a wall where, I imagine, urinating was allowed. Struck by the idea of woman watching man, he decided to explore that in his next photoshoot and the results are incredibly mysterious and even sexy. He could turn the most quotidian occurences into images of great sensuality and intrigue - such was his gift.

His photographs may have featured much female nudity, but nobody could accuse Newton of being sexist. Newton's women were strong, powerful, Amazonian, often representative of the idea of beauty in an era that birthed the supermodel. Nude, never naked, his women never seemed like objects even while they posed without a stitch of clothing on. He loved role reversal too, one of my very favourite aspects of his photography. Like this image, for example, which created waves at the time for turning the traditional urban gender roles on its head.

Woman Examining Man, St. Tropez, 1975

You want subversive, sexual images? Fetishistic, risque, really daring?

This is how you do it.

Araki, you who traverses the fine line between photography and pornography with such sordid ease, take note.


You're Visitor Number

hit counter
Get a hit counter here.
About this Blog

I've loved fashion for as long as I can remember, so it only makes sense that I write for a fashion magazine. I find however that the experience of working in the industry is quite different from appreciating it from afar. That's why I chose to be a travel writer (I chronicle some of my travel experiences here) while staying at the magazine, albeit focusing more on the lifestyle aspects of the job. This means that I must find another outlet for all my sartorial web crawling - et voila! Monyet in Pearls was born.

  © Free Blogger Templates Wild Birds by Ourblogtemplates.com 2008

Back to TOP