Yoshifumi Hayashi (1948, born in Fukuoka, Japan) is an artist known for his grotesque erotic art. In 1974 he moved to Paris, where he started to develop his smooth, graphite illustrations. His early work was heavily influenced by the metaphysical universe of the surrealist Giorgio de Chirico (1888-1978), but soon he started to focus more and more on the lower torso of the female and male anatomy. Other European influences are the surrealists Hans Bellmer (1902-1975) and René Magritte (1898-1967).
Hayashi’s work depicts the darkest depths of his subconscious and is imbued with scatological themes and references to the erogenous zones of the body. His drawing style is slightly reminiscent of the recently deceased Namio Harukawa (1947-2020). They both share a fascination for the female buttocks and its excremental “products”, although Hayashi’s subjects include surrealistic elements in which the stacked butts, penises, intestines, legs and breasts seem to form a new entity.
Hyper Auto Erotic Art: Hayashi
Even though little is known about the artist a film has been made on the work of Hayashi by the Polish film director Walerian Borowczyk entitled Hyper Auto Erotic Art: Hayashi (1980). In the film we follow a camera panning over the work of Hayashi, with classical music in the background.
Update Sept 3, 2021
During an exhibition in Japan in 2013 entitled “My Homeland“, Hayashi commented the following about the exhibition and his work,’ Speaking of my homeland, for me, there is no other place than Japan. It’s been 38 years since I left Japan, but my country is only Japan.
However, the title of this exhibition, “My Homeland,” is not the homeland where I was born, but the ideological country that forms the basis for my work. It can be said to be my subjective view of the world. Furthermore, this is a self-awareness of what kind of world you are a resident of.
How you recognize yourself is a prerequisite for creating a work. Otherwise, it’s like floating in a world of weightlessness. Far from being able to create a work without determining one’s feet, even “thinking” remains a fantasy with no direction.
Therefore, “my homeland” is equivalent to “self-awareness.” By the way, self-awareness is one of the basic problems of philosophy, and the more you think about it, the more obscure it becomes. I avoid philosophical questions because there is no space, but one psychologist explained about self-awareness. What you are is that the person’s life tells you that.
Yes…. True self-awareness is to live hard and sprout from the soil of blood, sweat and tears.’ (Yoshifumi Hayashi in 2013)
In the new millennium, he has been associated with the Mondo Bizarro art gallery in Italy, and his recent exhibitions have been well received.
Sources: artandpopularculture.com, Vanilla Gallery, Jardin de eros by Victoria Combalia (Editor), Jean-Jacques Lebel
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