Tuesday, 4 June 2013

Nobuyoshi Araki x Michael Hoppen Gallery

Image © Nobuyoshi Araki

If you haven't yet had a chance to check out Japanese photographer Nobuyoshi Araki's exhibition at Michael Hoppen Gallery in London, then GO! 
On until June 8th, it's a visually 'stimulating' look at rope bondage as an art form, "the beauty of tight binding" which the controversial photographer known as the 'King of Provocation' explores in his first solo show in 50 years.

Following his uncompromising visual aesthetic documenting sex and beauty, the show presents his Kinbaku series capturing the art of Japanese bondage, alongside Shunga prints, which reference the original form of Japanese erotica in the eighteenth and nineteenth century. The exhibition runs in conjunction with the release of the book 'Nobuyoshi Araki - Bondage' published by Taschen, which features a collection of images of women tied and bound, including his long-time muse Kaori.

If you're easily shocked, maybe give this exhibition a miss - I recall seeing one of Araki's other visual tomes "Tokyo Lucky Hole" in a bookshop in Rotterdam, which juxtaposed snapshots of nudes with hardcore pornography shot in Tokyo's famous red light district - a friend who was with me turned a shade of beetroot as we flicked through the pages - let's just say it's not one to look at on public transport! 

For those of you unfamiliar with Araki's work, he also collaborated with Lady Gaga on a bondage-themed photoshoot for Vogue Hommes Japan back in 2009, you can see all of those images HERE.

The exhibition at Michael Hoppen may be offensive and disturbing to some, but it's also strangely seductive, educative and beautifully presented - so catch it before it finishes its run. For more info head HERE.


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