Suehiro Maruo is a Japanese manga artist specializing in adult manga, generally of a violent variety. Born in January, 1956, he lives in Tokyo, and as far as I can tell, always has. He dropped out of high school and started trying to sell his comics at age 18. Because he was not a graduate of anywhere and because his artwork is of such a highly sexual and violent nature, his work was rejected by the manga magazines for several years. Finally, his work was accepted by Eromanga. In the intervening years he was a prolific shoplifter, specializing in art books and music. Despite (because of?) these beginnings, Maruo has become one of Japan`s most revered underground manga artists.

Maruo calls his style ero-guro which is short for erotic-grotesque. Most of his work is highly sexual and combines elements of extreme violence with sex. However, his work has been greatly influenced by the ukiyo-e style woodblock prints (and the more violent muzan-e), and his work exhibits the clean, classic lines of that style. Indeed he has claimed to hate all modern art, especially the often idiosyncratic styles of other Japanese underground manga artists. There are times in his work when the viewer feels that she might be, in fact, looking at a reproduction of a centuries old ukiyo-e print. Then she turns the page and finds a scene of such tremendous violence that she knows she is back in postmodern Japan.

Maruo`s best known works are (given in the English titles):
Mr. Arashi's Amazing Freak Show, translated into English and published in 1992
Planet of the Jap, translated into English
How to Take a Japanese Bath, for which he only did the artwork (written by Leonard Koren)
Ultra-Gash Inferno, translated into English and published in 2001
CD liner artwork for Naked City


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