Eikoh Hosoe was born in 1933 in Yonezawa, Yamagata. He is a Japanese photographer and filmmaker who emerged in the experimental arts movement of post-World War II Japan. He is known for his psychologically charged images, often exploring subjects such as death, erotic obsession, and irrationality. Through his friendships and artistic collaborations he is linked with the writer Yukio Mishima and 1960s avant-garde artists such as the dancer Tatsumi Hijikata.
At birth Hosoe’s name was “Toshihiro”, he adopted the name “Eikoh” after World War II to symbolize a new Japan. While he was a student at the Tokyo College of Photography in the early 1950s, Hosoe joined “Demokrato,” an avant-garde artists’ group led by the artist Ei-Q. In 1960, Hosoe created the Jazz Film Laboratory (Jazzu Eiga Jikken-shitsu) with Shuji Terayama, Shintaro Ishihara, and others. The Jazz Film Laboratory was a multidisciplinary artistic project aimed at producing highly expressive and intense works such as Hosoe’s 1960 short black and white film Navel and A-Bomb (Heso to genbaku).
Eikoh Hosoe is best known for his dark, high contrast, black and white photographs of male and female bodies.