Kaori Yuki MMF: Introduction

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When you search basic information about Kaori Yuki on wikipedia, you’re encountered with a semi-blank page. I’ve mentioned that before in the Call for Participation. If something you want doesn’t exist, the only solution you have is to create it yourself. I am a bit lucky, since I found a description on Carlsen publishing house as well as on German wiki and I can put to use my German language knowledge. What follows is a translation and editing of these pages with some additional information that are more up to date. 

Chapter 1: Personal Information & Life


The “Kaori” part of “Kaori Yuki” is her real name. Her doujinshika name is MoonClock. She supposedly lives as a hermit with her cat, but very little is actually known about her; she is after all, very shy of publicity and travels, she claims in her manga side notes. As of October 2010, she has a six-year-old daughter and three-year-old son. Her only travels abroad are in Germany during the Animagic 2001 in Koblenz and the book exhibition in Leipzig in 2006.

Chapter 2: Work & Publications

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Kaori Yuki got her long-desired debut as mangaka with Natsufuku no Erii (Ellie in the Summer Clothes), with which she advanced up to semi-finals in a talent contest by manga magazine Hana to Yume. Since then she remained without exception faithful to the magazine and published there, from 1987 until 1993, a series of fantastic short stories, which are put together in the omnibus of Kaine, Zankoku na Douwatachi (Cruel Fairytales) and Sareki Oukoku (Gravel Kingdom).

Among her most well-known works is the Count Saga, one of the many short stories of horror and mystery manga that were put together, which takes place in Victorian London. Kaori Yuki put the series in 1994 on hold in order to devot herself to Tenshi Kinryou Ku (Angel Sanctuary), which she finished at 20 volumes in Autumn 2000, and was so well-received that it got adapted into a 3-parts OVA along with 2 artbooks, Angel Cage and Lost Angel. After that, she continued working on her Count Cain series, which was brought to a close under the title Godchild at the total of 13 volumes.

In the years that followed she continued writing short stories and series for Hana to Yume, among them 0 no Zoukoushi (Parfume Master), Ludwig Kakumei (Ludwig Revolution), Yousei Hyouhon (Fairy Cube) and Guignol Kyuutei Gakudan (Grand Guignol Orchestra). In 2010 though, Kodansha founded a monthly manga magazine, Aria, which became Iiki no ki‘s (Demon from a Foreign Land) home.

Kaori Yuki has also designed the characters for the computer game Meine Liebe, for which an anime was based on.

Chapter 3: Style & Artistic Influences


Her manga bear her own distinctive detailed, dark style and are populated from abudant characters of ice-cold beauty. This always present, subliminal erotic element has surely contributed at some part to the artist’s popularity. Besides, she is notorious for the cruel twist her stories often take.

In the fanciful costumes of demons and angels in Angel Sanctuary one can recognize the influence of the gothic culture of Tokyo and the androgynous leather-clad rock bands. Kaori Yuki often shares with her readers her music interests, when she gushes for her favorite bands in the afterword of her published manga. The name, for example, of the character Kira from Angel Sanctuary is, in her own words, a reference to the singer of the japanese group ZABADAK, whom Yuki adores. Her fans know that she almost never draws without background music. “I get my best ideas when I walk with my Walkman,” says Yuki. “Sometimes I nag about how I lose sight of the people in front of me. Eventually, I will be run over by a car.”

Although she goes into old European legends and motifs in her stories, Yuki reads books that “only contain words” reluctantly. She’s much more fascinated by western films and pop music. Laughing, she admits too frequently in interviews that she spent her university schooling in cinema halls and on some days she watched three consecutive films of David Lynch like Life of a dog: “My favorite films are the ones that create in me an oppressive, painful feeling. If I have watched a good movie, it awakens in me the desire to draw exactly that. ”

Her biggest visual influences include works such as “Legend of Billy Jean”, “Gothic”, “Lost Boys”, “Aliens”, but also “Torch Song Trilogy” and the “Rocky Horror Picture Show”, from which she borrowed the name of the Butler’s reef for Count Cain. She also worshiped in her youth David Bowie, Culture Club and The Cure. However, currently she prefers to listen to Japanese music.

Further Reading:

Savage Tattoos. A Kaori Yuki Blog by CONCRETESOUL at city lover
Why Yuki Kaori Is My Favorite by CONCRETESOUL at city lover

4 thoughts on “Kaori Yuki MMF: Introduction

  1. Pingback: My Week in Manga: April 15-April 21, 2013

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