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Death, irrationality and erotic obsession may be peculiar subjects for photography, but these thought-provoking themes have actually made snapper Eikoh Hosoe a respected name in the world of photojournalism.
Hosoe was born with the name Toshihio, but he changed it to Eikoh after the World War II to symbolize the revitalization of the new Japan – which coincidentally is another theme close to his heart.
Hosoe improved his photographic skills by enrolling at the Tokyo College of Photography. In 1960, he established the Jazz Film Laboratory, a project which aims to produce intense movies and photos that most conservative Japanese filmmakers and photographers would dare not touch.
Hosoe has managed to publish a number of picture books, such as Killed by Roses (1963), which starred writer Yukio Mishima in provocative poses. Another is Kamaitachi, which starred Tatsumi Hijikata. Published in 1969, Kaimatachi depicts photos inspired by the sickle-toothed weasel, which is common in Japanese countryside folk stories. His movies include black and white films ‘Navel’ and ‘A-Bomb.’
In 1995, Hosoe was awarded the directorship of Kiyosato Museum of Photographic Arts in Yamanashi. Hosoe, a true revolutionary in the field of photography, is considered as one of the best avant-garde photographers of Asia.