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Emi Anrakuji was born in Tokyo, Japan.  She studied oil painting at Musashino Art University in Tokyo. Soon after her graduation, she was diagnosed with a cerebral tumor which caused a severe degradation of her eyesight. The illness forced her to abandon her aspiration to become a professional painter. In the course of a decade-long recovery, one day she discovered that a camera can be a replacement of her eyes then began teaching herself photography at her hospital bed.  Anrakuji's obsession with the human body is a result, in part, from her long periods spent hospitalized. 

In her art, Anrakuji is an alchemist of images and a catalyst for daydreams and desires. 

She is the author of critically acclaimed monographs, including her most iconic work IPY and MISHO which was selected as one of the finalists under the independent category of Lucie Photo Book Prize in 2018.  Anrakuji's work continues to be exhibited and collected worldwide.  




2018    Finalist under the independent category,  LUCIE PHOTO BOOK PRIZE, USA


2006   The 22nd Higashikawa new photographer award, Japan 


2006   A Chairman's Prize, the Japan Alliance of Printing Industry, the 57th All  Japan Calendar Competition, Japan


2003   International Photography Awards, 1st Place, the Fine Art Abstract Category and Fine Art Photographer of the Year, USA


2003   Excellence Awards, Visual Category, Little More, Japan 


2003  Grand Prize, Albion Art Museum Photography Award, Japan


2002   Humming Bird Awards, Hirama Itaru Photographic Awards, Japan  


2002   Excellence Award, Niigata Tomioka White Musem, Japan 


2001   Excellence Award, London Photographic Awards, United Kingdom 



Museum collections


The Peabody Essex Museum, Massachusetts, USA 

The Museum of Fine Arts, Texas, USA 

Higashikawa Awards Collection, Hokkaido, Japan 

Joy of Giving Something, New York, USA 

Smithsonian National Museum of Asian Art, USA 

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