Poster of Nobuyoshi Araki Sentimental JourneyDecadence in Paradise 1971-2012

Nobuyoshi Araki is one of the best known Japanese photographers in China. He first became known for his photo collection Sentimental Journey, which revolved around his honeymoon trip with his wife Yoko. He has maintained a prolific output ever since, becoming a leading figure of Japanese photography. Walter Benjamin believed that as a medium that could be reproduced and widely disseminated, photography no longer possessed the singularity of the original, even though it was considered an art form. Nobuyoshi Araki’s practice affirms this view. For his massive quantities of photographs “meant to be read” (in the words of Gu Zheng), he uses various editing techniques to establish a loose narrative. In this way, his artworks are not single photographs to be closely examined. Instead, the process of flipping through one photograph after another is itself the artwork. Araki describes this technique as the writing of “private novels.”

With this method, Araki was drawn into Tokyo live as a participant, placing himself squarely within it. His artworks became the method through which he perceived the city, life and sex. Thus, he is ceaselessly photographing Tokyo’s streets, women and their bodies.

The Guangdong Times Museum is highly honored to present the Nobuyoshi Araki solo exhibition Sentimental Journey/Decadence in Paradise 1971-2012 from April 7 to June 9, 2013. The exhibition will present nearly 120 works from four of his series: Sentimental Journey, Winter Journey, Spring Journey and Decadence in Paradise, covering 41 years of the artist’s creations. This exhibition, however, does not engage in a retrospective but instead presents another side of him: his love and longing for Yoko. In Spring Journey and Summer Journey, he mournfully and prosaically photographs the passing of his wife Yoko and his cat Chiro, seemingly with drawing from his carefree and passionate disposition of old. In 2012, he moved out of his old home, and right before he left, he used flowers and toys to create Decadence in Paradise on his balcony in a commemoration of this abode of memories and the 2011 earthquake. These three series all correspond in one way or another to the 1971 series Sentimental Journey, presenting a more nuanced view of Nobuyoshi Araki. As a supplement, the exhibition will also present Arakinema, the unique presentation form that the artist invented, showing many of the artist’s best known works from the past 41 years.

Nobuyoshi Araki Sentimental JourneyDecadence in Paradise 1971-2012

About the exhibition

Dates: 2013.4.8-6.9

Venue: Guangdong Times Museum

Curators: Hisako Motoo Mao Weidong Wang Lian

Co-organized by: Guangdong Times Museum, Three Shadows Photography Art Centre, Gucang Contemporary Photo Gallery

Special Thanks to: Times PropertyExhibitions Info:

Opening: 2013.4.7 15:00

Series Activities:

Cross Talk: Photography of Japan Today

2013.4.6 14:30-17:00

Guests: Hisako Motoo Gu Zheng Guangdong Young Photographers

Venue: Guangdong Times Museum

Curators Cross Talk

2013.4.7 16:30-18:00

Guests: Hisako Motoo Mao Weidong Cai Meng

Venue: Guangdong Times Museum

“I-photography (shi-shashin)”—Nobuyoshi Araki’s Photography and Publications

2013.4.8 19:30-21:00

Presenters: Hisako Motoo Mao Weidong

Venue: Fang Suo Commune

Exhibition Period:2013.4.8-6.9 10:00-18:00 (Free entry, closed on Mondays except for holidays)

Guided Tour Service:2013.4.13-6.9 15:00-15:30 Every Sat. & Sun.

Courtesy of the artist and Guangdong Times Museum, for further information please visit

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