Bottega Veneta X Nobuyoshi Araki: The Art of Collaboration

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Bottega Veneta’s latest artistic collaboration is with famed Japanese photographer, Nobuyoshi Araki. Araki joins the ranks of artists like Ryan McGinley, David Sims, and Nan Goldin in the brand’s ongoing series of creative campaigns titled The Art of Collaboration. The Spring Summer 2015 campaign was photographed on location in Tokyo and showcases Araki’s unique photographic talent. The campaign features both the men’s and women’s collections and stars models Saskia de Brauw and Sung Jin Park.

Bottega Veneta X Nobuyoshi Araki: The Art of Collaboration

Photo by Nobuyoshi Araki, Courtesy of Bottega Veneta

Nobuyoshi Araki, also known as ‘Araki’ for short, is considered to be one of Japan’s most famous and influential photographers. Araki was born in Tokyo in 1940 and studied photography and film at Chiba University. After his university years, Araki worked as a commercial photographer but he quickly quit to pursue his interest in more risqué subject matter.

Araki’s photography is regarded for being highly sensual and unapologetically erotic. His most famous—and controversial—images depict women who are bound in a type of Japanese rope-tying called kinbaku-bi. His other works often depict women in various stages of undress and suggestive closeups of flowers. Despite his choice in subject matter, however, his photographs are far from vulgar. Araki’s images are tasteful and leave the viewer with a sense of intimacy that is increasingly rare and hard to come by in the time of Tinder and 140 character love letters. This sentiment has not been lost on the art world, and Araki’s photographs have become a part of numerous collections, including Tate Modern in London and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.

Bottega Veneta’s Creative Director and lover of Japanese art, Tomas Maier, said “More than simply provocative, Araki’s images have a powerful honesty and human poignancy that make them unforgettable. He has his own visual language, which I was very excited to see translated to the collection. I am pleased to say I am very happy with the results of our collaboration.”

As for the clothing, both the men’s and women’s lines were influenced by the idea of freedom in movement—a fitting complement to the liberal nature of Araki’s work. The garments feel relaxed, yet graceful, and many of the fabrics have been given a weather-worn treatment. The color palette is quiet and mainly consists of pale navys, blues, and greens. Fabrics like linen, gingham, and buttery lambskin are accentuated by hints of sequins and caviar beads for women, and various stitching and smoking techniques for men. The whole collection incites a sense of nostalgia and ethereality that is perfectly captured and synergized by Araki’s lense.

A video documenting the photo shoot will be added in February to The Art of Collaboration video series at

Credit: Bottega Veneta
Stephanie Park
Stephanie  Park
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