Japanese artist Nobuyoshi Araki is arguably one of the greatest and most controversial living photographers. Most famous for his erotic nudes and sensual flower studies, his photos and artworks challenges taboos and unabashedly confronts complex subject matter, most markedly sex and death. Nobuyoshi Araki had his first major UK art retrospective, Self, Life, Death, at the Barbican Art Gallery, London in 2005 and recently he is famed for taking Polaroids of Lady Gaga.
Nobuyoshi Araki was born in Tokyo, studied photography during his college years and then went to work at the advertising agency Dentsu, where he met his future wife, the essayist Yoko Araki. After they were married, Nobuyoshi Araki published a book of pictures of his wife taken during their honeymoon titled Sentimental Journey. When she died in 1990 pictures taken during her last days were published in a book titled Winter Journey.
Having published over 350 books by 2005 and still more every year Nobuyoshi Araki is considered one of the most prolific artists alive or dead in Japan and around the world. Among his photography books are Sentimental Journey, Tokyo Lucky Hole, Shino and Araki which is available to buy through our website. Nobuyoshi Araki also contributed photography to the Sunrise anime series Brain Powerd.
Although inspired by Japanese Shunga his work is thematically universal as is evident by the international acclaim it has received. Nobuyoshi Araki has exhibited extensively worldwide, including Tokyo and Paris, generating international critical acclaim. His works are held in numerous museum collections including the Tate and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.
The Icelandic musician Björk is an admirer of Araki's work and served as one of his models. At her request he photographed the cover and inner sleeve pages of her 1997 remix album, Telegram. More recently, he has photographed pop singer Lady Gaga. Nobuyoshi Araki's life and work was the subject of Travis Klose's 2005 documentary film Arakimentari.
Renowned for clashing with the authorities, in 1988 police ordered the removal from sale the magazine Shashin Jidai, which featured the Japanese photographer's works; obscenity charges were levelled against the artist during a 1992 exhibition and 1993 saw the arrest of a gallery curator who dared to display Araki's graphic nudes. One gets the sense that Nobuyoshi Araki is a rebel bucking the system.
Buy original artworks and signed limited edition prints by Nobuyoshi Araki at Opus Fine Art; the home of Contemporary art.