The year 2005 marked the beginning of publications by Araki which featured his painted photo works. Although this marks the published introduction of his use of vibrant color on top of his black and white photographs, Araki has continuously explored (and perhaps unintentionally)confronted issues of censorship within Japanese society. Faced with prosecution due to the graphic nature of his imagery, Araki, although always having confronted the comfort zones of his viewers, began to blot out and scrape over the genitals in the image substituting the exposed area with hand-scribbled lines of black, using more and more frequently bright and vibrant colors. This application of colors within Shikiin (published in 2005) brilliantly captures this now established part of his repertoire. Included within the pages are 128 images; portraits of his models bound in Kinbaku, vibrantly transformed with the painted brush strokes of Araki's hand. This self censorship of his works added a transformative element to his photographs, presenting them as a visual response on both the laws of censorship, as well as referencing the sexual imagery based on Japanese traditions alongside Araki's own visual motifs of color, used to portray all that is living and the use of monochrome to connote notions of death.
Discounted Leben und Tod (Life and Death)
Nobuyoshi ARAKI, Juergen TELLER