ARTS & CULTURE
11/16/2012 11:10 am ET Updated May 29, 2013

Nobuyoshi Araki's 'Bondage' Book: The Work Of A Genius Or A Monster? (PHOTOS, NSFW)

Nobuyoshi Araki has made over 500 books during his long career as a photographer. His work has been called "vulgar" and "mischievous," but no subject epitomizes the controversy inherent in the Japanese icon quite like the photos included in his book, "Bondage."

araki bondage

Kinbaku-bi, "the beauty of tight binding," draws off the complex relationship between pleasure and pain. Araki's homages to the form are overripe with eroticism, whether in a knowing look or a casual nude body suspended mid-air. The "permanent enfant terrible of the Japanese art world" once said, "To take a good photo of a woman, you have to sleep with her." Now in his 70s, Araki doesn't seem like he's going to clean up his sexually explicit photos anytime soon. He told VICE: "Once you give that up, you lose the strength to live." The images themselves may shock you, as may your reaction to them. Through striking color, emotive gazes and a delicate balance of beauty and violence, Araki seduces his viewers' eyes in order to betray their morals.

"Bondage" is a three-volume set of Araki's favorite bondage photographs, presented in a wooden box with, ahem, Japanese binding. Published by the ever-provocative Taschen, there are only 845 books available.

Since "Bondage" is a collector's edition, we can only feature a few of the NSFW selection of works included in the pricey book, which retails for $1,000. Take a look at the images below and let us know if Araki's controversial photos leave you bound to the screen.

PHOTO GALLERIES
Noboyushi Araki (NSFW PHOTOS)

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