Barazoku artist profiles

Here are some profiles of Barazoku artists whose work is displayed on the Vintage Barazoku page. Please check out that page for a taste of what was being produced in Japan in the 70s and 80s.

Tatsuji Okawa

The information about Tatsuji Okawa in extremely limited. His name and work first appeared in public in Fuzokukitan in 1963 when Okawa sent his pieces to Fuzokukitan. Mamiya Hiroshi, was a writer, helping the magazine with editing work on the pages for gays. A personal relationship between the two men started, and even after Odawa started to publish primarily in Barazoku all of his pieces were brought to the editorial office through Mamiya. So there was no personal acquaintance between Bungaku Ito, the editor in chief of Barazoku and Okawa.

For one of his episodes Yukio Mishima (Novelist) asked him to draw a picture of Mishima being tortured. Mishima’s appearance wasn’t close to the type Okawa liked, and Okawa was not happy with his drawing.

The grease in Okawa’s pieces is opposed to his attitude and purpose for drawing but never departs from his basic sexual desire. He is not afraid that his pieces are pornographic. With highly developed techniques his pieces are graceful. This entertaining and highly artistic state is one of the highest peaks erotic art can reach. Without doubt, Okawa’s pieces reach this peak.

In the mid of 1970’s, Tetsuji Okawa cleared out his personal stuff, gave his materials to Mamiya, and stopped drawing. He died in 1994 at the age of 90.

The works by Okawa were owned by Mamiya before they were given away or sold. The works that are featured in our gallery are from Bungaku Ito collection. They are really rear works.

(Some of the above is from Gay erotic art in Japan vol. 1 POT Publishing Co.

Tatsuji Okawa illustration from Barazoku magazine

Tatsuji Okawa illustration from Barazoku magazine

Go Hirano

Not much information at all exists about Go Hirano because according to Ito Bungaku, the editor in chief of Barazoku, Hirano would send his pieces anonymously to the editorial department and never appeared in person. This is the closest anyone got to a personal connection with Hirano. He remains a mystery.

Hirano’s name first appeared in public in the extra issue of Fuzokukitan in 1963. However, it is his later works, published in a larger number in Barazoku that people remember.

Go Hirano illustration from Barazoku magazine

Go Hirano illustration from Barazoku magazine

Minoru Toyama

(1936-Unknown)
His works were shown in “Sabu” and “Barazoku” from late 1970s to early 1980.

Minoru Touama illustration from Barazoku magazine

Minoru Touama illustration from Barazoku magazine

Hideki Koh

(Born 1951) A successful Japanese artist who has held many solo exhibitions in Japan, as well as in the USA and Australia. He is a highly skilled artist with a natural ability to harmonise color and form with unique composition. He began working as an illustrator in 1979 with Barazoku magazine, before working as an independent original painter in 1988.

Hikedi Koh illustration from Barazoku magazine

Hikedi Koh illustration from Barazoku magazine