In Sotheby's "Photographs" sale in London on 23rd May there are a number of prints by one of Japan's most celebrated artists of all time, the legendary Nobuyoshi Araki. His images often contain a range of dimensions, feelings and desires.

Pleasure and desire have often been described as sinful and shameful, not least in various religious advocates and writings through the centuries.

Click on the lot to check out the auction.

p1 On sale at Sotheby's "Yakuza" by Nobuyoshi Araki, silver print,1994. The man in the picture tattooed in the typical style of the yakuza, the Japanese mafia. Estimate £8 000-12 000.

What some may characterise as desire, could well be seen as threatening to others. Regardless, few things are as provocative yet so tantalising as nudity and sex. Over 3 000 photographic works can be found on Barnebys today,a number of which deal with human sexuality. Search all photographs on auction now.

p2 Fashion photographer Miles Aldridge images have become amongst some of the most coveted contemporary fashion photographs
"HOME WORKS # 3", 2008 on sale at Sotheby's £7 000 -10 000.

blog World famous photographer Robert Mapplethorpe is the man behind (or rather in front of) "Roger in Fishnets," 1983. Silver gelatine print developed before the photographer's death year 1989. Estimated at £5 300 at Heritage Auctions.

blog (1) Leif-Erik Nygård's picture of Marilyn Monroe, is one the very last nude pictures of her before her death. Thanks to Bert Stern, the Swede became world famous. Nygårds was namely an assistant to Bert Stern who in 1962 was commissioned to photograph the movie star.
The set of iconic photos depicts a drunken Marilyn Monroe (From "The Last Sitting"). The image from 1979 and is estimated at £2 600 at Swann Galleries in New York.

blog (2) American photographer Robert Mapplethorpe photographs of the sculptural human body portrayed in the ancient idealised form command high sums at auction. This is "Speight (Portfolio Z)," 1981. It is picture edition 25/25 and is estimated at £2 900 at the French auction house Tajan.

blog (1) French artist Pierre Molinier was himself a homosexual transvestite who pushed the boundaries of surrealism. "Hanel sur lit" from 1968 is on sale at the French auction house Millon for £700-1 000.

blog (3) On sale at Bukowskis, Andreas Kock "Stalker IV," 2006, numbered AP # 1. Estimate £1 900.

blog (4) One of the many photographs depicting Madonna. This one is taken by Herb Ritts in the 1990s. Estimated at £500-800 on sale at Julien's Auctions.

blog (5) American photographer Arthur Tress portrays the human body. This picture, without title, is from 1970. Estimated at £350-500 at Tajan in Paris.

blog (6) One of the more colourful photographic artists of our time, David LaChapelle. He dramatizes images that refer to the Bible or other historical events, often with a tangy twist of social criticism. "Deluge", edition 6/10, 2007 estimated at £25 000-35 000 at Sotheby's.

blog (2) "Portrait de Charlotte Rampling, Arles, 1973" by Helmut Newton is a classic photo that launched both photographer and Rampling into new heights of fame. Estimated at £14 000-18 000 at Millon.

blog (7) Considered as one of the world's greatest photographers of all time, his candid yet artistic photographs have their place in photography history. Henri Cartier-Bresson captured this silver print, "CALLE CUAUHTEMOCTZIN, Mexico City,"1934.
Sotheby's London is £5 000-7 000.

blog (8) Thomas Ruff shares the studio with another giant, Andreas Gursky. Their imagery differs dramatically. This image 'Nudes Fe 16," 2000. On sale at Sotheby's Photo auction in May, estimate £40 000-60 000.

blog (9) Herb Ritts is one of 1900s biggest names in photography. This vintage photograph in silver gelatin is entitled "Male Nude with Veil (Fitted) from Silver Lake in 1985. On sale at Bukowskis with an estimate of £3 800.

blog (10) "In the Box - Vertical, 1962" is the title of Ruth Bernhard's silver gelatin print. Estimate of is £2 300 at the American auction house Heritage Auctions.

blog (11) Don't fancy a print? There are stunning photography books on sale. One of the world's largest bookseller for art and photography books is the British dealer Peter Harrington who is now listed on Barnebys. This book entitled "The Other Side" includes works by Nan Goldin.

blog (12) One of Helmut Newton's countless iconic images; "Fashion Calvin Klein", American Vogue, St Tropez, 1975. Induced 1984. Estimate of is £10 000-15 000 at Sotheby's.

blog (3) Joel Meyerowitz "Vivian, Cape Cod, 1976" at the French auction house Millon for £300-500.

blog (4) There is something a little different about Marc Lagrange's lobster dinner; "Lobster dinner," 2006 at Millon. Estimate £5 700.

blog (5) "Liliana Dominguez pour la campagne Sisley" from 2001 was originally a promotional campaign with controversial images for fashion house Sisley. Terry Richardson's photo is estimated at £1 000-1 300, at Millon.

Please note that some of the images have been cropped or enlarged which may affect the image quality.

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