“If the reality hidden in my soul—even if it is only the smallest fragment of it—is able to evoke something in the viewer, then my intention has been achieved.” Toshio Saeki
In the 1970s, with unbridled explorations of violence, death, and sex in his works, Saeki captured the post-war spirit of cultural rebellion and social reinvention.
Saeki was a legendary figure of Japan’s postwar underground art scenee, having built a fervent cult following of his erotic illustrations that blended gore, humour, and Japanese folklore. As Tokyo was subject to social revolution in the 1970s, Saeki’s drawings—which took an overt, even playful approach to sexual taboo—captured the mood. “Leave other people to draw seemingly beautiful flowers that bloom within a nice, pleasant-looking scenery. I try instead to capture the vivid flowers that sometimes hide and sometimes grow within a shameless, immoral and horrifying dream.”
© Rod McRiven 2017