Yasuji Watanabe is the editor-in-chief of the Japanese cult magazine, SNIPER, and is also considered to be one of Japan's leading non-conformist art photographers. Radical in the tradition of the old master Nobuyoshi Araki, Watanabe has nonetheless, crafted his own individual methodology and visual style here, which is based, in part, on some of the fashion trends taking place among Tokyo's youth. Whimsical and fun it may be - but make no mistake about it - this work is charged with a high-voltage sense of all things erotic. Watanabe's subjects are captured in the most playful of settings, but their brazen sense of provocative nudity and sexuality saturates everything. Like little costumed dolls they prance and posture, but they also offer themselves to be bound and tied-up and paraded as objects of sexual fantasy. There are so many disparate elements at play here it might be hard for some to grasp what it all means, but Watanabe's cohesive and fantastic style are what unifies this body of work. As a whole, this book is a visual diary of a young, ultra-inventive, and technically astute, photographer working at the height of his powers. At 10.5" x 10.5" and flawlessly packaged, this is a superb production and one of the most creative books of erotic art photography published this year.
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