Leslie Kee is a (gay) Singaporean photographer who rocketed to fame as a kind of Asian David LaChapelle. Long based in Tokyo, his is a flashy (come might say trashy), glamorous aesthetic. His high octane fashion photography has graced CD sleeves for artists like Ayumi Hamasaki and Koda Kumi, while Lady Gaga, Nicole Kidman and the creme de la creme of the Hong Kong and Taiwanese entertainment worlds have appeared in his own “WE” and “Super” magazines. Leslie’s women are often elaborately made up and attired, while his male stars are frequently “tastefully” nude .
The recent “Super Tokyo” photo book saw a slew of Japanese actors strip off for the camera, often adorned only by kitschy postproduction graphics of Hello Kitties.
This sensibility has landed him in trouble though. His “Super Stars” book of pan-Asian celeb portraits (ostensibly a tsunami fundraising project) was banned in Singapore, and several top Hong Kong stars complained that their photographs had been digitally manipulated without their consent to make them appear naked.
There should be no such problems with his latest client however.
Kee’s new project, rather admirably, is a a sexy catalogue of Tokyo’s gay world: gogo dancers, porn stars and pretty boys. After shooting covers for the gay magazine “badi” he has now produced ”Super Pornstar”, a book of portraits of Masaki Koh, a model who has parlayed his boy-next-door looks into J-porn superstardom. Koh has made 85 movies since 2009 and now been immortalised by a top international fashion photographer. And for once, Leslie does not need to be so coy. Here are some of the tamer pics:
But that is not all. Kee has also produced a series of “Super Nude” limited edition books for each of his masculine Tokyo “muses”.
There is Kizuma, singer with Okinawan 90s pop-R&B band Da Pump:
And below, Tatsuya ( no idea who he is to be honest)
There is something really refreshing about a major fashion figure acknowledging his, err, roots (so to speak) in the gay world, not to mention seeing someone (a Singaporean no less!) ripping the door of the Asian closet with such gusto. There is nothing coy or ambiguous about a grinning, naked gogo boy with a hard-on, emblazoned with the slogan in large print “I’m gay!” These pictures leave nothing to the imagination.
Link to more (NSFW!) at http://sayonarababy.tumblr.com/#3 The pictures are also on show until January 28th at the Hiromi Yoshii gallery in Roppongi.