Saturday, 31 December 2011


                                WE WISH EVERYBODY A HAPPY NEW YEAR 2012!!!!!
                                                             Yours Kofū and Senju...

Thursday, 1 December 2011

Special Christmas offer!! Free Shipping on books!!

There is only a few days left before we can no longer guarantee the arrival of shipped books before christmas. For orders outside Europe the final guaranteed date is the 5th of december, and within Europe it's the 9th of december.

Anyone ordering copies of "Kokoro" or "Ryushin" will get free shipping within that timeframe, starting NOW!

Our books are big and rather heavy due to our constant focus on quality, so saving on shipping is a great way to finally be able to own o your personal copy. Both books are strictly limited and the stock is running low.

To order, go to our Paypal account at Our account name is Each copy is 199 Euro, and if your order is placed before the aforementioned dates shipping is free.

This special offer is not available through our website, or by clicking the "Buy Now" buttons on this blog. You have to go into PayPal yourself and do it. This offer of course applies to the copies with very slightly damaged covers that we write about in the top right corner of this blog.

Tuesday, 29 November 2011

Dentouwaza update!

We are under way with the production of our new book on traditional Japanese irezumi. This time we will be presenting the handtattooed art of Toshikazu Nakamura. Besides from our own photographs captured during two visits to his studio in southern Japan, the book will feature a multitude of photographs from Nakamura Sensei's own photoalbums (examples above).

This book will be a must for anyone into the more graphical and robust look of Irezumi, a style gaining ever increasing recognition here in the west.

The book, "Dentouwaza", is scheduled to be released at the Milan Tattoo Convention February 10-12 2012.

Pre-orders are possible from the 1st of December this year. These books will be shipped 1-2 weeks before the official release date and must be paid for in advance.

Tuesday, 15 November 2011

At work.

As the November darkness claws at the door of the Kofuu-Senju Publications creative office, our new book on the hand-tattooed traditional work of Nakamura Toshikazu is slowly taking shape.
In a few weeks "Dentouwaza" will be available for pre-order and then we will hopefully be able to present a sneak preview of the finnished work.

Pre-orders will be sent out as soon as the book arrives from the printers which in effect means 1-2 weeks before the official release at the Milano Tattoo Convention 10-12 February 2012.

The prize is set at 115 Euros+shipping & handling.

Tuesday, 8 November 2011

Dentouwaza Update!

A new photobook on Irezumi from Kofuu-Senju Publications.

-       144 pages
-       150 + photographs of Nakamura Toshikazu’s Irezumi works.
-       All photographs of Irezumi in full colour.
-       Hardcover with embossed title.
-       Threadbound
-       Printed on 170 gr Galerie Art Silk paper
-       Limited Edition of 550 numbered copies
-       Priced at 115 Euro

As with our previous Irezumi publications, Kokoro and Ryushin, our goals are to present an important work and of contemporary traditional Japanese tattoo art. This means that we maintain full and personal control throughout the entire production – from photography to design.

We want to create books for the collector and the curious alike.

Master Nakamura Toshikazu works in Kyushu, one of the southern of Japan’s main islands. His work is simple, bold and powerful, and it is all created entirely using traditional Japanese hand tattooing. Linework, shading and coloring are all done using dentouwaza (jap. hand technique), yet Nakamura Toshikazu is surprisingly productive. The full body tattoos and backpieces presented to the viewer of the photographs in Dentouwaza are but a small part of his body of work.
Nakamura Toshikazu is a warm and open person and we have had the pleasure to spend many hours with him, talking about his work and the way he views the tradition of Irezumi. These hours have led us towards the creation of this book. It’s the third book in an ongoing series of presenting Irezumi the way we discover it as we delve deeper into its world of tradition, myth and beautiful iconography.

We first went to visit Nakamura Toshikazu on the recommendation of master Horiyoshi III of Yokohama. This was in the late summer of 2009, as we were photographing for Kokoro. Our first meeting was on a humid and incredibly warm night in the beginning of September, and we were immediately charmed by the work presented to us. So much in fact, that we decided in the following year that we had to make a book showcasing Nakamura Toshikazu’s distinct style and design.
We visited again in the autumn of 2010 in order to capture photographs of his clients, as well as to have further conversations of everything Irezumi.

Dentouwaza will be released at the Milan Tattoo Convention 10-12 of February 2012, and pre-orders will be taken as of December of 2011.

For information on how to pre-order Your copy, see top right corner of this blog.

Monday, 3 October 2011

We have added a brand new video on the Kofuu-Senju Publications YouTube channel. Watch master Horiyoshi III of Yokohama paint bamboo using traditional Japanese Sumi-e technique.

Sunday, 2 October 2011

Kofuu (Alex Reinke) has started a Kofuu-Senju Publications Youtube channel. Here we will post videos of things related to what we do. Be sure to check it out from time to time. We will of course let you know when we post new videos.


Tuesday, 27 September 2011

Ozuma Kaname has left us this morning.

Legendary painter Ozume Kaname died this morning after losing a short and uneven battle with cancer. His paintings on silk of, among other things, tattooed female figures often wearing designs by master Horiyoshi III of Yokohama, are regarded as masterworks by those familiar with the tradition of Irezumi.
We had the pleasure and priviligie to meet the late master painter in the spring of 2010 when we payed him a short visit together with amongst others Horiren.

He will be sadly missed by all.

Kofuu and Senju

To see examples of his outstanding work, please go here

Sale on slightly damaged copies of "Kokoro".

What we are talking about here are copies of our Horiyoshi III photobook "Kokoro", that have minor damage to the cover. The inside is in superb condition.
When we get nearly a ton and a half of books delivered to our storage there is boound to be a few copies that slipped by the printer's final quality check. We have gathered these on a special shelf and discussed back and forth what to do with them. We arrived at the conclusion that selling them for a bit less would be a good thing.

So we are offering these copies for 125 Euro plus shipping (35 Euro) each. Please mail us at and make sure that copies still are available. After a OK from us you can just go ahead and place your order by paying the amount to our PayPal account (

Monday, 26 September 2011

"Dentouwaza" is our new upcoming book.

Dates are set for the release of our third book on Irezumi. It is to be named "Dentouwaza" and features the amazing traditional, all hand-tattooed works of Nakamura Toshikazu.
While photographing for "Kokoro" in 2009, on master Horiyoshi III's recomendation, we went to visit this amazing traditional irezumi artist on the southern island of Japan called Kyushu.

We were so impressed with the work he showed us, that we immediately started drawing up plans for a future book project dedicated to this relatively unknown horishi. In 2010 we headed back with full studio gear and photographed a selection of his clients. Together with a selection of Nakamura Toshikazu's own photographs of his clientele, this has now formed itself into a one of a kind book.

Again, we will bring you the highest quality irezumi in the highest quality book we can create.
For this project we will continue with the same proffessionals that printed our earlier efforts, even though they have now moved on to another equally exeptional printing company.

The release of "Dentouwaza" will take place at the Milan Tattoo Convention 10-12 of February 2012.

The edition is limited to 550 numbered copies only.

Monday, 2 May 2011

Half the copies of "Kokoro" already sold.

Only three months has passed and only some 250 copies of our limited edition hardcover photobook on Horiyoshi III remains in stock. It has gone faster than we initially thought and this makes us more than happy. Further book projects are already in the works in order to present traditional Irezumi to the world.

Our first book of Horiyoshi III dragon paintings, "Ryushin", released in october last year, has already sold in about 500 copies. Since the limited edition for this one was 1000 copies, it seems that the two titles are competing neck to neck in sales.

Anyone out there that still want to secure copies of these titles can order them through this blog or by visiting our website.

(painting by Irezumi master Horiyoshi III)

Tuesday, 22 March 2011

Horiyoshi III book "Kokoro" recieves warm welcome.

Since the release in february this year of our 550 copies limited edition new photobook on Horiyoshi III we have been met with nothing but warm words regarding its contents.
"Kokoro" is doing even better than expected, and this before we have even advertised or any reviews have been published. We hope to be sold out before the end of the year, if not before.

Our previous venture, "Ryushin", a new limited edition book of 199 original brush and ink paintings conitnues to sell at a steady rate as well.

This gives us the confidence to continue our work on the already planned future projects, of which at least one will see the light of day as autumn closes in.
Other plans are already in the making but it is still too soon to reveal these to the public.
It looks like Kofuu-Senju Publications is here to stay.

Stay tuned for further news as they unfold.

(photos and flyer design by Kofuu-Senju Publications copyright 2011)

Sunday, 13 March 2011

Tsunami: Horiyoshi III and his family are fine!

Since we had lots of calls concerning Horiyoshi IIIs' well being we decided to post this on our blog. A few things in 3 of his Tattoo Studios broke but nothing mayor. Everybody is fine. Since the nuclear problems are getting worse no one knows how the situation will change.
Thanks for everyones concerns and their calls and emails. We have planned a trip to Japan for in 2 weeks time and are not sure if this trip is going to happen or not. We were lucky and fortunate not to have been there while it happened because this year we wanted to document the cherry blossom season so we scheduled our trip for the end of march instead.

Wednesday, 2 March 2011

Our new limited edition Horiyoshi III book selling fast! All pre-orders now sent out.

Finally all the pre-orders are on their way to their reciepients. The limited hardcover edition of 550 numbered copies now has only about 300 copies left! This book is going fast, which feels as a strong indication that we actually managed to put something unique and good together, and that the public appreciates the effort.

A great "Thank You" to all our supporters out there!

Information on how to order our books can be found to the right in this blog.

(photograph by Alex Reinke, Yokohama, Japan 2010)

Wednesday, 23 February 2011

"KOKORO", our new photobook on Horiyoshi III is out now!

Finally all the copies of "Kokoro" have arrived at our office. This is a strictly limited hardcover edition of 550 copies so be shure to order your copy soon. With launch sales at the Milan tattoo convention earlier this month plus all the pre-orders we have already effectively sold about 150 copies in just about two weeks!

The book was very well recieved in Milan, and all the copies we had with us sold out fast. The pre-orders are being sent out as you read this, in the order they were recieved. It should be completed in a day or so.

In order to obtain your copy, use the Paypal button on the right hand side of this blog, or visit, click your way to "Books", find "Kokoro" and hit the "Pay Now" button and you have successfully secured a copy.

Wednesday, 16 February 2011


We only had a few launching copies of "Kokoro", our new photographic portraitof Horiyoshi III, with us to the Milan Tattoo Convention, and the bulk of the books are making its way to us by truck as I write this. Everyone that was wise and pre-ordered their copy will see them sent to them as soon as we recieve the shipment. The lowest possible number of each individual copy has been reserved for You, and we hope that you will soon be able to have a look at our latest book.

Wednesday, 9 February 2011

From tomorrow Thursday 10th February 2011, both Kofuu and Senju re going to be at the Milano Tattoo Convention launching their 'KOKORO' book. Alex Kofuu Reinke Horikitsune will be tattooing there with his student Leon-san. Horiyoshi IIIs' son Soryo Kazuyoshi will also be there with his friend Horikazu-san both coming into Italy from Japan.
Come check it out, pick up a copy of our book and get tattooed :-).

Monday, 24 January 2011

"Kokoro" Preview

All that now remains before the launching at the Milan Tattoo Convention of our latest book "Kokoro", a photo book on legendary irezumi master Horiyoshi III of Yokohama, is but a few weeks. There was considerable less posting here during the production and design of this project compared to when we were creating "Ryushin", but this was a whole other affair. So much energy went into the design, the selection and editing of photographs and writing. Time just flew by and we worked litterary around the clock the last three weeks before deadline.

As you read this, the printing of "Kokoro" is progressing according to our printers, Fälth & Hässler's, plan, flights and rooms for the Milan Tattoo Convention have all been booked and the finnishing touches to our new banners for the booth have been laid. Now it's just a long wait for those boxes full of boxes to arrive at the Kofuu-Senju office.

We have decided to reveal some of the contents of "Kokoro" here on this blog prior to the launching. The six pages above is accompanied by 194 others in the finnished work. It contains 260+ new photographs in a format similiar to "Ruyshin", but with a few subtle changes to better frame its contents. We chose a different paper and texture for the cover as well as another aproach to what's getting embossed or not on that very same. It was a matter of best bringing out the astounding sumi brushwork from the hand of our subject matter. He painted the callligraphy for the cover before our cameras last summer. It has since then become one of my favourites as far as zen calligraphy goes. You'll see.

Also we chose another paper for the body of the book in order to properly bring out the photgraphic work and give the images justice. We selected the photographs from a pile of about 2000, and it was probably the hardest part of the project. So many favourites had to be left out in order to create a good flow and just the right texture and feel.

This hardcover edition is strictly limited to 550 numbered copies, and to make sure you will be able to obtain a copy it is best to pre-order it. More info on how to go about doing this can be found here.

Hopefully we will see you in Milan 11-13 of february!

/Matti 'Senju' Sedholm Horimatsu

(Photographs by Alex Reinke & Matti Sedholm Japan 2009-2010)

Thursday, 13 January 2011

Closer still

Our printer, Fälth & Hässler, called today with the great news that all photographs to be featured in our new book on Horiyoshi III, "Kokoro", are now processed and ready for printing. We have checked that all the pages are in their correct order in the final document. Tomorrow I will recieve the proofs for the photos, which have to be checked and okayed, and then sent back. All in all the realization of our efforts is approaching, an almost unreal sensation. Usually there is a void, an emptiness, in the production for us once the book is handed over to our very skilled printers. Come the days just before the Milan tattoo convention we will finally have the result in our hands. Perhaps the longest, most anxious awaiting we have been subjected to since we started Kofuu-Senju Publications.

Pre-orders are coming in, and to make sure that you will be able to get a low number of this strictly limited hardcover edition of 55o copies only, please go here for info on how to place your pre-order.

(photograph by Alex Reinke, Yokohama, april 2010)

Wednesday, 12 January 2011



Waku'an (looking at Bodhidharma's picture) complained, "Why has that Barbarian no beard?"

Mumon's Comment:
If you study Zen, you must study it with all your heart. When you attain enlightenment, it must be true enlightenment. When you really meet Bodhidharma face to face, then you finally have gotten it right. However when you start explaining it with words, you have fallen into duality.

Do not explain your dream
Before a fool.
The barbarian has no beard,
How could you add obscurity to clarity?

Our latest book, "Kokoro", a photobook on irezumi master Horiyoshi III of Yokohama, is now available for pre-order. This 200 page, 250 plus photos, threadbound and hardcover edition is limited to 550 copies only. In order to make sure you will be able to obtain a copy, follow this link.

(photo by Matti 'Senju' Sedholm Horimatsu, Yokohama 2009)

Tuesday, 11 January 2011

After months of intense work, especially in the past 3 weeks, we have finally made it to deliver the files of our flagship book KOKORO to the printers yesterday! Words cannot describe how happy we are with the outcome and we cannot wait to hold the book in our hands! If all goes as planned we will offer the first copies of our book at the Milano tattoo convention in February, of course after having sent out the ones we already sold to the early birds.
The book is limited to only 550 numbered copies and has the same dimensions as our last publication Ryushin. Again printed in Sweden by Fälth & Hässler it has 200 pages and is filled with texts from both authors Matti 'Senju' Sedholm and Alex 'Kofuu' Reinke, irezumi master Horiyoshi 3 (including some of his amazing calligraphy) and Alexs' Zen-master Julian 'Daizan' Skinner Roshi, plus old texts and koans of Zen master Dogen Zenji. Of course it shows loads of photographs taken in Japan by Matti and Alex. The photos depict mostly every day scenes of master Horiyoshi III, his tools and surroundings as well as Japanese nature shots, temples and city life. We try to give the observer a profound idea of the spirit of Kokoro, which surrounds everything Japanese, especially its craftsmanship.

The Kokoro book is already available for pre-orders (with pre-payment only) since a month or so. In order to get the lower numbers of the limited edition you need to be quick, as sales have picked up increasingly. more information on how to pre-order can be found here.

(Kokoro Calligraphy by Horiyoshi 3, Photo by Alex Reinke.)

Saturday, 1 January 2011

HAPPY NEW YEAR 2011 everyone!
(Photos by Alex Reinke Plettenberg, Dec.2010)