Shinoyama Kishin

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SHINOYAMA Kishin 篠山 紀信 (1930.12.3) Tokyo.

One of Japan's most famous photographers, mainly for nude photo books of famous Japanese actresses and pop idols. Helped to spearhead Japan's lifting of the pubic hair ban in print media in the early 1990s. His 1991 nude book "Santa Fe," featuring MIYAZAWA Rie, is Japan's best-selling photo book of all time.

Major themes Japanese actresses, nudes, pop idols, kabuki

Education Studied photography at Nihon University, Tokyo, 1961-63.

Career Photographer at Light Publicity Company (an advertising production company), Tokyo, 1961-68. Freelance in Tokyo from 1968.

Shinoyama got his big break with "Tanjo" or Birth. It was a series of nudes on a beach in Tokunoshima, Okinawa. They showed at the Ginza Nikon Salon in 1968.

In 1991, Shinoyama published water fruit, a nude photo book of actress Higuchi Kanako showing pubic hair prominently. Later in the same year, he came out with the sensational Santa Fe which featured nudes of popular actress Rie Miyazawa. One photo in the book showed a small portion of Miyazawa's pubic hair. The police did not deem it obscene, and other photographers followed suit with their own photo books showing pubic hair.

As long as genitalia was not exposed, pubic hair was being allowed in print in Japan. This was the start of the so-called "hair-nude" boom in Japan. It was a real revolution in the world of Japanese photography, occurring almost 20 years after pubic hair first appeared in Playboy magazine in America.

Awards Newcomer Photographer Prize, Japan Photo Critics Association, 1966; Photographer of the Year Award, Japan Photographic Society, 1970; New Talent Award, Japan Art Academy and Ministry of Education, Tokyo, 1973; Annual Prize, Kodansha Publishing Company, Tokyo, 1973.

Book reviews Santa Fe The Kabuki-za Yukio Mishima's House RIONA water fruit