Cart 0

If I Become a Flower by Shoji Otake



Shoji Otake's collection of nude photography "If I Become a Flower"  published by Nihon Geijutsu Shuppansha in the 1985.



From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Ootake Syouji Portrait

Shōji Ōtake (大竹 省二, Ōtake Shōji, 15 May 1920 - 2 July 2015) was a Japanese photographer famous for portraits and nudes.

Ōtake was born in Yokosuka (which later became Ōsuka, then Kakegawa), Shizuoka on 15 May 1920, the oldest son of a father who worked in the sake industry and a mother who performed on the koto and (transverse) flute. The boy's mother died when he was six, and he moved to the house of his father's elder sister, his younger brother moved to another house, both in Yokosuka, while his father tried and failed in the transportation industry and quickly moved to Tokyo. A year later, the boy moved to the house of a rich family, still in Yokosuka. He started at school, quickly showing an aptitude for drawing, gaining a special mention in a national contest.

Shōji moved to Tokyo with his father in 1928, living in Nippori with his father's new wife. He became a keen photographer when very young.

Ōtake joined the army, but was able to work as a photographer. In 1947 he managed to attach himself to GHQ, for which he photographed singers and actresses at the Ernie Pyle Theatre. From 1949 he became involved in a succession of photographic organizations, as he continued work as a photojournalist. Starting in 1951, he spent five years photographing classical and other musicians from around the world during their stays in Japan; these photographs were published in Asahi Camera and in 1955 were collected in the highly praised book World Musicians.He was also publishing nude photographs in the magazines Camera and Photo Art.

From the 1950s through the 1970s, Ōtake moved to become the top photographer of women in Japan.[1] For five years from 1971, Ōtake photographed housewives and "OL" nude (sometimes together with their babies or small children, also nude) on Nippon Television; this work too was later collected into books.

By the 1980s, Ōtake's fame and commercial success as a portraitist and photographer of nudes had eclipsed his earlier and very different work. Republication within the volume dedicated to him of the series "Shōwa Shashin Zenshigoto" (1982), and the publication the following year of Haruka naru uta, brought it great acclaim.

Besides photography, Ōtake has also worked as television screenwriter and an essayist. As a photographer, he remained active into his late 80s.

Among the photographers who have trained under Ōtake are Mineko Orisaku[2] and Sanae Numata.[3]


Share this Product

More from this collection