Seiji Kurata’s “Eros Lost” features nude photography originally taken in the 1980s, including previously unreleased images.
In these photographs, Kurata stages his human subjects in relation to their indoor surroundings, drawing visual comparisons with machinery or furniture and using elaborate lighting and even scripts to sculpt his artistic vision.

Kurata began publishing selections of his nude photography in the magazines "Shashin Jidai" and "Shashin Sekai" between 1985 and 1989, collecting them in photobook with “Quest for Eros” in 1999. This new publication, created together with the artist in the year before his death in February 2020, features many unpublished photographs from Kurata’s original negatives.

“Over a 40-year career, Kurata continued his dialogue with the camera. His works are highly regarded for his continual explorations into both the conception of his subjects and the techniques of image-making. Kurata was always an enthusiastic man in sharing his ideas about the discovery of photography—his lifetime pursuit. Can a certain moment become an eternity? Will the story of all existence be affirmed and accepted under the same sky?” (from editor Amanda Ling-Ning Lo’s afterword)

Artist Profile


Born 1945 in Tokyo, Kurata Seiji graduated from Tokyo University of the Arts, Department of Painting in 1976. From 1974 to 1976, he also studied photography at the Workshop, featuring instructors including Tomatsu Shomei and other photographers. In 1980, Kurata won the 5th Kimura Ihei Award for his series “Street Photo Random Tokyo 1975-1979”. Recognized in and out of Japan, his recent exhibitions include “Autophoto” at Fondation Cartier pour l’art contemporain (Paris, 2017) and “Another Kind of Life: Photography on the Margins” at Barbican Art Gallery (London, 2018). His main publications include “Flash Up: Photo Street Random 1975-1979” (1980, Byakuya Shobo), “Photo Cabaret” (1982, Byakuya Shobo), “Great Asia” (1990, IPC), “‘80s Family” (1991, JICC), “Japan” (1998, Shinchosha), “Quest for Eros” (1999, Shinchosha), “Flash Up” (New Edition, 2013, Zen Foto Gallery), and “Eros Lost” (2020, Zen Foto Gallery). Kurata passed away on February 27, 2020.

Gallery Exhibitions