If like me, one are one of these people who likes to dig around the weirder side of the Weird Wide Web, then you couldn't have failed to some point to have come across pictures of dismembered body parts toys from Japan. Or the bright graphic of the baby bursting out of the microwave, its guts spilling out. You may have just shrugged, laughed and shook your head, mumbling, "Oh, those Japanese!" But have you bothered to find out what they are all about? Anyone who knows about Japanese pop-culture will be aware of their love of extreme violence through manga, anime and J-Horror cinema.
These particular toys are by the ero-guro (エログロ) and manga artist Shintaro Kago. Ero-guro is an artistic movement in Japan that depicts the decadence of society through images of extreme sexual violence, eroticism and sexual corruption. Deviant and grotesque to a ridiculous degree, the movement which has a long history in Japan, has influenced many areas of Japanese pop-culture.
Shintaro Kago, made his début in 1988, has become a very popular artist. His grotesque works, push many boundaries, both in style and imagery. Taking things to such extremes that they appear comedic, yet unnerving, satirising aspects of Japanese culture. His range of toys, which are available by mail order, and through vending machines in Japan, play with the idea of collectable toys for adults. Mirroring other mass-produced collectables, and are available as key-chains, phone charms and vinyl book shelf display pieces.