Item description for Araki by Araki: The Photographer's Personal Selection by Nobuyoshi Araki...
" There is nothing more interesting than women, and nothing more exciting." -Nobuyoshi Araki Araki by Araki is a record of the career of Nobuyoshi Araki, self-styled "photomaniac" and permanent enfant terrible of the Japanese art world. Published to mark the artist's sixty-third birthday on May 25, 2003, this volume features 2002 photographs covering his entire career from 1963 to 2002. Sex-trade voyeur, recorder of Tokyo cityscapes, chronicler of married life, or experimental photo artist - no matter what your image of Araki, this collection will reveal new aspects of his talent, as it traces his unique vision over forty prolific years. All the pictures were selected by Araki himself (who also provides an original commentary), making Araki by Araki not only a comprehensive but highly personal overview of the artist's work to date. High quality color and duotone black and white printing ensure the highest standard of reproduction throughout.
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Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 1.25" Width: 8.75" Height: 10.75" Weight: 4 lbs.
Release Date Aug 8, 2003
Publisher Kodansha International
ISBN 4770029381 ISBN13 9784770029386
Availability 0 units.
More About Nobuyoshi Araki
Nobuyoshi Araki, born 1940 in Tokyo (Japan), is arguably Japan's greatest living photographer, and certainly its most controversial. His inexhaustible creative energy is attested to by the more than 300 books he has published in the last four decades. His work often challenges social taboos surrounding sex and death.
Reviews - What do customers think about Araki by Araki: The Photographer's Personal Selection?
Araki's personal offering. Fascinating, but not the place to start for new viewers. Jan 30, 2008
Araki by Araki is an interesting collection selected by the man himself for his 63rd birthday. This makes the book both incredibly interesting for those already familiar with Araki and a poor choice for those unfamiliar with his work. These pictures are very personal for Araki for reasons not really explained, but first-time viewers would do well to start with a collection that contains more of his classics.
The photographs are arranged chronologically, which allows us to see the evolution of his aesthetic over the course of his long career. This is rather unique, as most other collections are grouped by theme or some other organizational scheme. It's not necessarily better per se, but it is unique.
Another interesting aspect of this collection is that some of the photographs are presented retouched, as Araki tends to do. In the Taschen collection, the pictures appear as they do on the film negative, but as we know, Araki tends to paint over his pictures - both to add vital color to some of his monochromes (which he describes as death), and to self-censore some of the more explicit areas. Its quite interesting to compare the originals with the retouched versions, so that will doubtlessly be of interest to connoisseurs.
Also on the note of censorship, I noticed at least two instances of cloudy pixillation - very minor - but this is probably due to the Japanese publisher and their rather strict guidelines.
Finally, a word on the commentary. I was disappointed to find very minimal commentary spanning only two pages. Araki provides two or three sentences on maybe 60% (or less) of the photographs within. If you're buying this for the commentary, I'd think twice. He doesn't say much in these fragments that he doesn't also say in the excellent documentary "Arakimentary." Since the commentary is so minimal, an introductory essay would have been nice. I don't think Westerners such as myself can fully understand Araki's aesthetic without at least a little cultural context. Everything I've read on Araki directly translates into more viewing pleasure and I'm fairly sure that would be the case for anyone.
This is not a huge collection like the ones available from Taschen or Phaidon, but for the collector, this is an interesting volume, if only to see which pictures Araki feels the deepest personal connection to. You do get many many photographs, but they tend to be small (his massive "Tokyo Lucky Hole" is summarized on two pages!!), so I wouldn't necessarily buy this for the reproductions alone. While the image quality is very acceptable, I'd rather have fewer, bigger reproductions. Regardless, I highly recommend it to collectors. If you decide to make this your first Araki book, just make sure it isn't your last.
crazy smorgasborg Jul 12, 2007
Not for the faint-hearted, or those without a sense of humor - but this is a remarkable collection of the notorious photographer's work. Some may find the bondage shots disturbing. If so I recommend watching the DVD "Arakimentary." This will put the whole thing in perspective. Araki is so amusingly solicitous of his models' comfort. His manner is endearing. He photographs EVERYTHING. And he does it well.
Not for timid viewers Jun 12, 2007
Araki is the self proclaimed bad boy of the Japanese art world. His photography ranges from scenic to pornographic. This book covers the highlights of an expansive career covering his documentary, portraits, bondage and abstract work. Stylistically he is all over the place, sometimes intentionally degrading the "quality" of the image by scratching or burning the negatives, at other times, using medium format cameras and intricate studio lighting. Araki is provides a great example of the infinite possibilities that non-digital photography has to offer. WARNING: the book contains sometimes graphic nudity and adult content.
Photo-Maniac Apr 11, 2005
Self-described "photo-maniac" and sex trade voyeur, Nobuyoshi Araki is modern Japan's best-known photographer. This selection is an autobiographical recording of the artist's career from 1963-2002. It chronicles in black-and-white and color the whims of the enfant terrible of the Japanese art scene-and the changes in Japan as well. Reviled by feminists for his frequent use of ropes and other implements to bind women, Araki remains unrepentant and upbeat. If that and his documentation of Japanese brothels is not your cup of tea, his lovely color shots of exotic flowers may be more appealing. They bring to mind some of Robert Mapplethorpe's work. However, it is the recurring motifs of rope, lizard, yukata, tatami, Tokyo street scenes, and above all the ever-present Japanese female nude that appear most often in this book. Also, Araki provides commentary ("Notes of a Photomaniac") on each picture, which has been translated into English.
Not for readers unfamiliar with Araki's work Nov 26, 2003
This is (as the title states)the photographer's personal selection of photographs from different bodies of work amassed over a 40 yr period. It's interesting to see work from his early days (even his commercial photos done while working for an advertising agency)and to see how much Araki was influenced by photographers like Cartier-Bresson, Robert Frank and William Klein. I cannot recommend however as introduction to Araki's oeuvre. All the photographs are taken out of context of their original books/project and there is only minimal commentary by Araki on select photos and no introductory or explanatory essays to help one understand the complexity and scope of Araki's work and personality.