Shotaro Akiyama is best known as a glamor and celebrity photographer, often dubbed the Japanese Sam Haskins. He photographed almost every important star of screen and stage anticipating later trends in erotic photography in Japan. Till now his work remains fresh and contemporary.
“After the war Akiyama went to work for the photography section of the movie magazine Kindai Eiga…, he began to center his photography on actresses and nude dancers, and to turn out women’s photographs of true uniqueness. The use of strong lighting on the hands or face and the use of a black backdrop from which the model stands out in bold relief characterize the pictures of this period. The works introduced here include nudes dating from Akiyama’s earliest work as well as recent photographs. Characteristic of Akiyama’s nude photographs are the effective use of light and shadow and the extreme beauty of the curved lines. Drawing on his long years of experience doing women’s portrait photographs, Akiyama molds the elements of line, mass, and the light and shadow to effectively express the fascination of the feminine. In this he sharply contrasts with a number of younger artists who are linking nude photography to human sexuality with the aim of breaking down and destroying accepted conventions…”–Tatsuo Shirai, book notes
Shotaro Akiyama | from “Naked Portraits” first published 1979 as Volume #23 from the Asahi Sonorama Series published between 1977-1980 which extended to 27 volumes and is a remarkable collection of photobooks by the leading Japanese photographers of the time.
Shotaro Akiyama´s “Naked Portraits” is a rare book, you may find a copy at mikitimi books. (sold out atm)