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Tuesday, 20 January 2009

Mitchell’s A-Z of Fetish Artists - Funayama

With Funayama we enter a dark, dark world of bondage used as a vehicle for abuse, torture, mutilation and even cannibalism. His pictures often show bloody wounds and the atmosphere is filled with menace and fear which can be both exciting and repulsive at the same time. Not exactly my cup of tea but he has produced some excellent bondage images of which I include a selection here.

You can see he has a well developed technique and the rendering of details like body hair and clothing is excellent. In the hogtie picture below the relative positioning and the sizes of the different characters are not true to life but adjusted to fit into the composition. He does it so well that this is not obvious to the viewer. Tom of Finland had a similar ability to disguise the impossible.


The bamboo stave seen here features in many of Funayama’s compositions, being used for beating, poking and levering joints. Traditional Japanese loincloths also appear and when shown in combination with conventional soldiers uniforms, for example, these accessories create a sense that the captive is being subjected to an ancient ritual. I am not well versed enough in Japanese culture to fully understand the significance of this iconography but the erotic impact is still powerful.

Not all of Funayama’s faces are as attractive as the ones shown here. They all tend to have dark edged, staring eyes which are quite disturbing but entirely in keeping with the dark subject matter of the pictures.

There are samples of Funayama’s work at which is also a good reference source for many other Japanese fetish artists

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