“I adored her smile”
Madonna has shared a few images from her 1985 photoshoot by Kenji Wakasugi, who portraied the Queen of Pop during her first visit to Japan for the promotion of the Like a Virgin album. Her post is a nod to the released of Adore Madonna, a limited edition collector book by NJG Studio, the publishing house founded by Nicholas James Groarke.
Wakasugi was allotted 45 minutes for a photo session commissioned by Playboy Weekly Excite. Loaded with a mesh of now iconic references from early Gaultier and Westwood, to the Healthy Swimmer T-shirt and Boy Toy belt-buckle, the Takara Kronoform robot watch, to Maripol’s layered rubber and crucifix jewellery – time has done nothing to diminish the potency of these photographs, NJG explains on their website where the 200-page limited edition art book can be ordered.
“Madonna was very modest, had a great manner, and seemed powerful,” Wakasugi said, quoted by W Magazine. “I adored her smile.”
“I don’t speak English, and there was no translator, so there was no conversation. I said ‘Great!’ ‘Beautiful!’ through each pose and movement she made. She was 100 percent ready for the shoot, so I was inspired and committed. Between Madonna and I, there was a spark throughout the session. There was no room or space between us.”
“It is almost a miracle that 36 years later, they now became this art book,” the photographer told Interview. “There she was, inside my camera. Thank you, Madonna.”
“In the studio, there was one flash unit and one pink sofa, nothing else,” Wakasugi told Dazed. “There were just a few people in the room. She was beyond beautiful. She was vibrant, vigorous, energetic, bright, full of spirit. There was no stylist in my memory, just Madonna’s own personal style. She wore the same clothes she arrived in when she came to the studio, and she did not change her clothes. She wore the coat when she got in the taxi.”