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Tetsuya ICHIMURA "Salome" 1970 Photobook

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Tetsuya ICHIMURA, photographer. "Salome." Japan: Gendaishinsha, 1970, First Edition, HB, Leatherette boards with silver title, 40 cm x 27 cm, 154 pp, 100 b/w gravure plates with calligraphic rice paper separators.

Reference: Bertolotti, Books of Nudes, p. 170.

Though not prolific, Ichimura's contributions are important ones. Another of Ichimura's photobooks, "Come Up," was featured in Kaneko & Vartanian's "Japanese Photobooks of the 1960s and 70s." Whereas "Come Up" was minimalist and enigmatic, "Salome" is maximalist, grandly designed, printed with sumptuous gravure - one of the most beautiful photo books ever printed.

"Ichimura's surreal and somewhat psychedelic take on Oscar Wilde's take on the Biblical archetypal for countless femmes fatales throughout the history of literature. Printed in lush, inky gravure, Ichimura's figures are startlingly graphic and, like those of Eikoh Hosoe, are also depicted in a style that renders the flesh abstract and strange."--Photo-eye

"Bold contrasts and graphic interplays were always in evidence, even in the most conventional books of nudes. In Salome (1970), for example, the photographer Tetsuya Ichimura initially took his inspiration from the decadent, sophisticated images of Aubrey Beardsley and Alastair (Hans Henning von Voight) that had illustrated Oscar Wilde's tragedy, in the end, however, he too rejected an over-classical harmony by exaggerating to excess the whiteness of the models against the completely black pages that broke up the space. This meant that the figures were enveloped in an unreal space, and that the details of their bodies were lost in a fantastical, disproportionate setting. That was essentially what all these artists wanted to bring about, a crises in the concept of harmony at the heart of Japanese culture."--Bertolotti

Condition: Excellent, with original numbered outer box, slipcase and the original mylar protective jackets for both the book and slipcase (almost never seen), numbered from an edition of only 500 copies. Very Scarce in this condition, the usual ink migration and offsetting is very minimal, by far the whitest encountered. The binding is so firm and strong I don't want to open up the book flat on a table for pictures. Tipped-in decorative tissue paper colophon is still present.

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