Illustration by Go Hirano (平野剛) Quote from Gengoroh Tagame’s art...

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Illustration by Go Hirano (平野剛)

Quote from Gengoroh Tagame’s art history book Gay Erotic Art in Japan vol. 1: Artists from the Time of the Birth of Gay Magazines:

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

According to Bungaku Ito, the editor-in-chief of Barazoku, Hirano would send his pieces anonymously to the editorial department, and never appeared in person. This is the closet I got to a personal connection with Hirano. He remains a mystery.

[…] The most distinctive character of his art is “the act.” There is no story here, just naked men pleasing each other, and combining their bodies. There is no feeling other than the pleasure of sex, no background to explain the situation. The flesh of men fills the whole frame. Their massive flesh is all there is.