Flesh Love: Photographs of Vacuum-Wrapped Tokyo Couples

Haruhiko-Kawaguchi photography

On a kitchen floor in Tokyo, Japanese photographer Haruhiko Kawaguchi spends 10-20 seconds photographing couples that he meets in nightclubs. He arranges them like pieces of meat inside bags meant to store futons and blankets. He then seals their conjoined bodies inside the bag using a household vacuum that sucks out all of the air.

For this project, Flesh Love, he’s photographed over 80 couples. Kawaguchi says the men panic more often than the women. A few have struggled for air while in the bag and one man ended up pissing himself. The women just want to look good, he says.

Haruhiko-Kawaguchi photography

Haruhiko-Kawaguchi photography

Haruhiko-Kawaguchi photography

Haruhiko-Kawaguchi photography

via Oddity Central

  • never_wore_zubaz

    Excellent opportunity to Dutch Oven your loved one.

  • michelle

    japanese people do some weird shit.

  • joe

    The untold story:
    all those couples are still shrink wrapped in his basement.
    just saying.

  • peabody3000

    usually when lots of people say “this isnt art!” its a pretty good indication that it most certainly is

  • raj

    so beautiful, scary, fetishistic, poignant. Art at its best

  • This is D-A-N-G-E-R-O-U-S. Kids, don’t do this at home!!!

  • GK0

    To comment #6, Jim Tetro – English is obviously not your strongest subject. Don’t quit your day job.

    Unless you’re an English teacher. Then, you should quit.

  • So, this guy walks up to people in nightclubs and says, “Hello, I would like to wrap you up in shrink wrap plastic, suck all the air out of it, and then take your photo.”

    Sorry, but my first thought would not be an art project, but rather, “Dude is a psycho sadist murderer on the prowl.”

  • Fantastic Art. Great Work, Congratulation to Haruhiko ! Love It !

  • D van de Erve


  • Rhys Walker

    Wow, this is great! Visually representing closeness in relationships, through the future’s increasingly common medium of minimising space consumption. (Most prominent in Tokyo of all places). Phones that connect us with our loved ones get smaller every year, so to represent romantic connection in the most compressed manner possible (even to the extent that the compression of the world we live in is harmful, and even strangling us) is a stroke of brilliance!

  • Christian

    Daring concept. I love the results!

  • agaace

    Apart from high risk of suffocation, this can actually burst eardrums. I don’t see models wearing protective earplugs. So stupid.

  • mercedes

    Childrens spend to much time on the internet have you think on the possibility that those children try to do it at home ? Youve got a big responsability over youre shoulders.

  • Jip

    Jim Tetro: ‘effect’ is a noun, ‘affect’ is a verb, so you’re wrong, it’s ‘nice effect’.

  • Orestes

    AWESOME!!! Love it!!! Human products/packages… like buying chicken, like we are, you know…

  • Jenelle

    I don’t find this visually stimulating at all! And there’s nothing artistic about it,makes me wonder what will be next????

  • Jip

    “critic 05.02.13 at 4:38 pm
    unoriginal – such a cliche – please think outside of the box…or bag for that matter…”

    I bet you creamed yourself over your “wit” when you came up with that “joke”. If it’s a cliche, please point me to where it has been done bef0re… Or else, realise what a twat you sound. Either’s good.

  • Mark

    Couldn’t it be said that art just kind of reflects the times? And in sick times even art would turn out “sick”.

    But why debate art in terms of good or bad?

    Seems to me it somehow would be more productive if you who don’t like this just explore just why amongst each other and those who appreciate it do the same?

    Just an idea and no, english isn’t my first language.

  • kaginl oh

    Its was different n fresh~

  • WOW !! Please take my picture !!

  • Dana

    I’m always amazed that people will attempt to nitpick another comment and “correct” something in it without having the slightest idea what they’re talking about. Does it never cross their minds to Google it, just to be sure, before making themselves look like pompous idiots?

  • Reminds me of James Rosenquist’s gift wrapped dolls from 1993, but those were paintings and really played with lighting.

  • Si

    This is art?

  • This is the kind of stuff we like to produce, congratulations. The shiny materials give an extra to the entire attire, Keep on Vacumming.

  • To those here who take offence, who get angry, who feel their hands become clammy in fear, you should realise that YOU are now the art. And that’s the point. With a simple photograph he has elicited in you a strong emotional response, one that will spur you on to thoughts about life and art.

  • Xenia

    It’s an interesting idea even though it’s risky, but I can’t see anything artistic in these pictures. They’re not good at all.

  • Raicov

    Ridiculous idea. its not only 10 – 15 seconds they can’t breath for there

  • Interesting take on photography, but very creative & innovative none the less.

  • YT

    Social criticism at its finest. Looks good 🙂

  • Sangnam

    What’s this? is it brand-new 6-sigma birth-control?

  • cool….though I think I’d be pretty scared if I was the one stuck in the bag with no air. I can imagine it would be pretty easy to start panicking.

  • KaneBlueskies

    The Brits can learn a thing or two about innovation, far more interesting than Tray Emins – un made bed that people seem to label ”art” cool concept and technical photography is great. Love it!

  • Alejandro

    O.K….ok…ok…, ¿de qué da cuenta esta búsqueda fotográfica? ¿De humanos envasados al vacío? ¿De humanos mercancías? ¿De la reificacion del sujeto globalizado? ¿ O es un mero capricho “snob”? Al observarlas como fotógrafo no aprendo nada de esas fotos. Al ver como las obtienen pienso en las estupideces que hacían mis alumnos en sus viajes de vacaciones. En definitiva, usando una vijeja expresión local en mi país: “una tilingadal”.

  • Amber

    Come on then Xenia lets see you take better photos? Who made you the expert?! I personally think he’s very talented.

  • Well said. i too had the 15 minute loop running in my head. Seems to be a good example of failure of imagination. Nevertheless, this may be part of the process to getting to bigger and better ideas. One would hope. Maybe a stack of wheat pancakes nearby help…something cryptic written in dark syrup. 🙂

  • gunniesack

    Its art
    Some like it, and some dont.

  • gunniesack

    a night club?
    Im thinking opportunities on craigslist

  • strawberry wolf

    dont fart….

  • banana cheese

    dont fart….

  • The L

    you do it then : )

  • jdklsjdkl

    It says in the article that he approaches people in nightclubs

  • gunniesack

    Yes I observed that

  • Jeanette Fonseca

    No wayyyy. Jose

  • onekathryn


  • sparkletorus

    Comedy at its finest!

  • how?


  • Bazil83

    So the point of your comment was…?

  • Guestnam

    You’re right. You would pass out, but if the danger was realized quick enough you could be pulled out and resuscitated. However it isn’t outside of the realm of possibilities (is he trained in CPR?) and it is a strange thing to hook up with a random dude at a club and do.

  • Guestnam

    I don’t even think the effect is neat to be honest. But they are consenting adults so who am I to judge.

Subscribe to our newsletter

Get some visual inspiration into your day!