Nobuyoshi Araki is a contemporary Japanese photographer who is famous for his erotic imagery and prolific output. Nobuyoshi was born in Tokyo Japan, on Mary 25th, 1940. He studied photography at Chiba University and began pursuing his career as a commercial photographer in 1963.
Nobuyoshi Araki lives in Tokyo, Japan, which has served him as a constant source of inspiration throughout his career. Araki often addresses subversive themes such as Japanese bondage, Kinbaku or Shibari. His fascination for female nudes and his focus on flowers or street themes, makes his work controversial and fascinating.
Nobuyoshi Araki’s love for women and rope has written the path of his career. His most popular and controversial images are the ones about the erotic practice of Japanese Rope Bondage. In them, nude women appear restrained by rope.
Araki became popular in the 1990s, when an exhibition at Art-Tokyo show at Camera Austria stirred controversy. Female workers in the exhibition hall went on strike, due to the bondage photographs of women. They considered those pictures sexist and degrading. At the same time, the images of girls in pigtails and uniforms suspended in the air by ropes caused a great scandal in Japan.
Although Nobuyoshi Araki exhibits have been censored in Japan, due to their obscenity, Araki is quite popular in Europe. He’s also popular in the United States. This is because his photographs reveal an intimate space of consensual sexual freedom.
With his fascination with women and in rope, he created beautiful art which was recognized around the world. Rope has become part of him. He always has a rope with him. Even when he forgets the camera, the rope is always in his bag, and as he says: “Since I can’t tie their hearts, I tie their bodies instead”