Araki by Araki. The Photographer´s Personal Selection.

Araki Nobuyoshi, as I am sure most of you know, is this controversial photographer from Japan that has a lot of sexual pictures, some of them even pornographic, and has been banned in his own country a few times and seems like he slept with all his models.

Well, part of that is true (I leave to you to find out what), but Araki is actually a much more accomplished artist. Controversy is just one element of many in his work.

This book here is, as its title clearly states, a selection made by Araki himself, of photographs taken in an almost 40 years span of time: 1963 – 2002

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The book is divided in years, one chapter for each year and it covers the whole range of Araki´s ouvre. It is actually amazing to see how much variety and styles Araki has had through all these years.

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Of course you will find sexual stuff in the book, but I just don´t find it offensive at all as I think it is pretty well done and in good taste.

The book design is also pretty good, some pictures taking a  full-page, some other pages full of stuff, and all done beautifully. Kudos to the designers.

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BW, color, flowers, food, cats, people, portraits, candid pictures, sex, death, kids, landscapes, alleys… All is here so this book could be considered a great introduction to the artist.

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The book is thick, 410 pages, and it was published in 2003 by publishing titan Kodansha. I got in amazon at around 50 bucks. I think is out of print but that is not much of a problem as you can find a lot of Araki materials on print, like the Taschen books. and many more. This one reviewed here is just one if the finest I could find.

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DOMU film project.

It is strange, but after a week of the screening I have not seen any comment about it.

Last saturday night there was an all night screening of Otomo Katsuhiro works: Short Peace, Manie Manie and Akira.

Right after Short Peace there was a “secret screening”. Turned out it was a teaser trailer of a live action version of the manga Domu, written and drawn by Otomo. The trailer stated that the movie was directed by Otomo himself.

And it was AWESOME.

The trailer begins with a shot near the ground moving towards an elevator door. The lights are flickering. The elevator doors open and we see the good old guy of the manga, with his cap full of pins and badges. All around him the lights flicker, even on the other side of the building. All has a slightly green look. Then we see aerial views of the residential complex and lots of images that look like straight out of the book. We see the salary man committing suicide by jumping from the top of the building, we see the little girl flying around the building with amazing and impossible dynamics. the old guy flying next to some apartments and they blow up as he passes by, the old guy flying through some subterranean tunnel, and we can see through some grids the building outside. We get a short look to some characters, a cop shaking as he sees a gun, the guy that cuts his own throat… I can´t remember all of it perfectly but it was intense. Wish they had screened it once more.

All in all was absolutely amazing, and I was so thrilled to see it there, completely by surprise, in Kichijoji no less. I had no idea this was happening so it was quite special thing.

Disclaimer: I have not much control of japanese language, but the guy said that this was just a short teaser. I am just not 100% sure there is a movie in the making behind it. Maybe this is just a teaser trailer to get financing. I guess sooner or later we will all know.