Art & Photography

Adore Madonna

Kenji Wakasugi’s new photography book reflects on the singers first trip to Japan in 1985

There was an old yellow Kodak box on the shelf of my darkroom. Inside was a set of black and white negatives together with a series of contact sheets. It had sat there, out of light, for thirty-five years. But I am now able to share these pictures with you all through this photo-book ADORE.  

It was January 1985, Tokyo – Madonna’s first visit to Japan to promote the ‘Like a Virgin’ Album. I was allotted 45 minutes for a photo session for Playboy Weekly. In the studio there was one flash unit and one pink sofa, nothing else.

Madonna sparkled along with the song ‘Like a Virgin’. It became more than just a promotional shoot, I felt myself being drawn into another world. Words cannot describe each moment that passed. But they are all here, within this book.

Even today, whenever I murmur the name ‘Madonna’, the image of her at that time springs to mind. Looking back, I realise now that if there was ever a time when I developed as a photographer, it was then. I am grateful to Madonna for that time. And once again, I would like to say ‘thank you very much’. 

Adore Madonna by Kenji Wakasugi is a limited edition publication of 800 books designed and published by NJG