@hardwaregirls ツイート


Cover Photo

Cover Photo Back Cover Photo

A photographic collection for Hardware OTAKU,
featuring Kawaii girls and a self-portrait

Julie Watai is a photographer extraordinaire, who captures contemporary scenes of the Otaku culture playing out in Shibuya and Akihabara. A unique, versatile talent, Julie is also active as the idol known as "Ai Amano." For the collection this time, Julie chose the theme, "beautiful hardware girls." The book is filled with cool, colorful, erotic, and adorable shots of 25 beautiful girls, which includes Julie herself (and even some boyish-looking girls). If you happen to be an enthusiast of machine parts, such as family computers, electronic parts, LAN cables, microcomputer boards, synthesizers, etc., you are certain to find their juxtaposition with the “hardware girls” to be tonic! Jam-packed with their pinups, this work is destined to become a timeless collector's item

HARDWARE GIRLS €17.00 ¥1,575

Author: Julie Watai
Book size: 149 mm x 186 mm
Number of pages: 96
Weight: 156 grams
Language: English/Japanese
Publisher: Konohana Books / Printed in Japan 2010

JAAPAN Artistic Agency アマゾンで買う


thumb1 thumb2 thumb3 thumb4 thumb5 thumb6 thumb7 thumb8 thumb9 thumb10 thumb12 thumb13 thumb14 thumb15 thumb16


Julie Warai

Julie Watai Profile
With a strikingly Lolita-esque face, Julie Watai is a miraculous 31-year old photographer and artist. Her talents continue to find expression in various media, including television and newspaper, helping her to garner popular attention from not only the otaku in Japan, but all over the world. Her virgin-themed anthology, Samurai Girl, was released by an Italian publisher and achieved cumulative sales of 1,200,000 copies. She is also active as a guradol (gravure idol) under the name Ai Amano.
Official site: http://juliewatai.com/

登場モデル 一覧 田中涼子(タレント))  三森すずこ(声優)
とりでたくみ(DJ)  ノトフ(ライター・生主)
森下くるみ(タレント)  Yunch*(歌手)

We received comments from experts of various fields.

comment 1 For those of us who grew up watching anime, reading manga and playing computer and console games, these images are as stunning as they are familiar. When asked what the subject is, one might say it’s the girls. But this isn’t simply male fetish. After all, behind the camera is a young woman named Julie. Her focus, I believe, is the world as she experiences it. A beautiful, vulgar world of color, excess and stimulation. The girls in these images are surrounded by media and technology. They often seem to be absorbed into the background, becoming part of the larger composition.
In some ways, they come to represent the technological condition. At the same time, they gather and focus attention, providing constancy to chaos. Here, too, we see the otaku aesthetic: a free relation to technology opened through and grounded by the young girl.
Few can (en)frame the subject and reveal this truth as Julie has done.

Patrick W. Galbraith,
author of The Otaku Encyclopedia and Tokyo Realtime: Akihabara.

comment 2 Between tactile reality and the in-game world flicker, there exist a very real universe. Ask any player, it exists, there is is. “HARDWARE GIRLS” captures that fantasy world that hums beneath circuit boards and in cartridges. The ‘hardware girls’ themselves are personifications of this game realm -- the world controlled by joysticks, directional pads and buttons. You can't touch, but these photos beckon you to reach out and try.

Brian Ashcraft,

comment 4Obviously, since I'm male, I find myself at first captivated by the lovely girls on display. But if I temporarily put a lid on such erotic inclinations, I'm impressed by the touch of sadness and desolation these images evoke. The objects entangling the girls are 8-bit and 16-bit game consoles, virtual games found in video arcades, and numerous synthesizers and keyboards. What we see are good old scenes of 80s, but having been an undergraduate student back in the day, I can say for sure that girls such as these were nonexistent. So what you see in these photographs are really impossible...Still, I realize and feel dumbstruck by the fact that we're actually inside Julie Watai's head (when she was 5 years old).

Kazuhiko Hachiya,
Media Artist

comment 3The first time we met, her eyes impressed me. They looked elegant. I found out only later that she was none other than Julie, the multi-talented, samurai-girl artist who embodies the spirit of Cool Japan itself. When I met her for the second time for a piece I was covering for an adult science magazine, she had a soldering iron in her right hand. And here she is now, before my very eyes, reappearing as a media artist, wielding masterly command over microcomputers. I can't help but wonder just how many faces this child has. Still, her eyes stay the same. In her eyes, you can see "an enduring yearning for having fun." This must be the wellspring of her talent, don't you think? My generation calls this "KONJYO," or guts. It's that flame flickering deep inside the eyes of Huuma Hoshi.* This old man absolutely has a soft spot for such elegant eyes of such a woman. I’ll be sure to keep an eye on her from now on as well.

Shigeru Kaneko,
Editor of "Otona No Kagaku Magazine"

comment 5This collection features kitschy, pop girls, bathed in light with chemical tones. They stand out amid the milieu of old-school video arcades and other places where 8-bit goods, embellished in a medley of primary pastel colors, figure prominently as the apogee of family-computer culture. In yet another scene, which apparently seems to be an electronics parts shop (LED specialty store!?), we see them all tied up with LAN cables. This is undoubtedly one digital psychedelic work of art. It reveals a world that unfolds in the abyss of chaos. Just labeling it as a piece of game-enthusiast memorabilia will not do justice to it. These shots powerfully say ‘I like fashion, art, and cute girls!’ in such a uniquely evocative way. It’s distinctive to Julie's gaze.

Her style is certainly something you won’t find in your average Japanese photographic collection. For people who appreciate this type of thing, it's addictive, I'm sure. I'm one such person, and I believe those who bought this app are the same. It conveys the importance of shouting out with a smile, "I really like what I like." But the analog edition with the ALICE (PSK) sticker is unfair! It makes you want it so bad!

Ryota Musha,
(Made in 1971,Ryota Musha is a gadget writer who contributes to the Japanese edition of GIZMODO/Kotaku, in addition to goods-related magazines of MONO magazine).