Karasu (Ravens). Photographs by Masahisa Fukase. Edited with text by Akira Hasegawa. Designed by Kazhyuki Goto. Sokyu-sha, Tokyo, 1986. 131 pp. Quarto. First edition. Clothbound with debossed raven design. Cardboard slipcase with printed label. Printed insert (in Japanese) detailing locations of images (quite rare.) 62 black-and-white reproductions.
"Arguably the post-Provoke masterpiece of Japanese photobooks," write Parr & Badger in The Photobook: A History, vol. I. Fukase's work share's with Provoke "a similar combination of the intensely personal with the metaphorical, another allegory for the state of the country...The raven is a symbol of ill-omen in Japan as in the West...But if Karasu is a bitter indictment of the industrialized country, dehumanized and picked over by the natural scavengers of capitalism, the skies heavy with pollution, it is also a superb demonstration of how the photobook can also deal with the private...Fukase's cry of despair is perhaps one of the most romantic photobooks...The imagery is beautiful, surprising, haunting, but ultimately it is Fukase's masterly handling of the narrative and rhythm that makes it so memorable."
Fine+; slipcase with a few shallow 'dings', thus Fine-.