Clamp (manga artists)

is a Japanese mangaka group. The group's manga series are often made into anime after release. Almost 100 million Clamp tankōbon copies have been sold worldwide as of October 2007.


Clamp originally began in 1989 as a twelve-member dōjinshi circle, but by 1990, the circle had diminished from twelve to seven. Of the remaining seven, Tamayo Akiyama, Sei Nanao, and Leeza Sei left the group during the production of the RG Veda manga. Other former members of Clamp also included Soushi Hishika, O-Kyon, Kazue Nakamori, Yuzuru Inoue and Shinya Ōmi. Currently, there are four members in the group.

According to Clamp, the group's name means "a pile of potatoes". (While this explanation may seem apocryphal, a storage clamp is indeed used for temporary storage of root crops, such as potatoes.) Clamp's genres vary widely, from childish and comedic (Cardcaptor Sakura, Clamp School Detectives) to much more dramatic and teen-rated (xxxHolic, X) series.

In 2004, Clamp's 15th anniversary as a mangaka group, the members changed their names from Nanase Ohkawa, Mokona Apapa, Mick Nekoi, and Satsuki Igarashi to Ageha Ohkawa, Mokona, Tsubaki Nekoi and Satsuki Igarashi (her name is pronounced the same, but written with different characters) respectively. The August 2004 issue of Newtype USA, a magazine specializing in events of the anime and manga subcultures, reported that the members of Clamp simply wanted to try out new names. In a later interview with Ohkawa, it was revealed that initially Mokona wanted to drop her surname because it sounded too immature for her liking, while Nekoi disliked people commenting that her name was the same as Mick Jagger's. Ohkawa and Igarashi, wanting to go with the flow of Nekoi's and Mokona's name changes, changed their names as well.

In 2006, they made their first USA public debut at Anime Expo in Anaheim, California. They were well received at the convention, with 6,000 fans in attendance at their panel.


Their work Cardcaptor Sakura won the Seiun Award in 2001.

Current members

Nanase Ohkawa, formerly Ageha Ohkawa

  • Born May 2, 1967 in Ōsaka. Ohkawa is the leader of the group and the script writer. She negotiates with their editors and sometimes writes the screenplays for the animated version of their manga. She recently changed her name back to Nanase.Mokona
, formerly

, formerly Mick Nekoi

, formerly

  • Born February 8, 1969 in Kyōto. Satsuki assists Mokona and Nekoi in their work, and is also in charge of the design of the tankōbon. She also has a monthly column in Kadokawa's Newtype magazine.

Former members

Tamayo Akiyama

  • Born April 28, 1967 in Ōsaka.
  • Officially left in October 1992. Sei was an assistant artist on RG Veda. She was also in charge of story and illustrations of Combination, a manga based on an original idea of Ohkawa. When Sei left Clamp, she continued this series under her "Clamp name", finishing it in 6 volumes. After leaving the group in October 1992, she changed her name to Iba Takeo and published her manga (Gilgrim in 2 volumes, Phantom Cognition in 10 volumes and Tasogare no Rakuen 7 volumes and still running) in Princess Gold magazine. She is still creating dōjinshi with Nanao Sei, another ex-Clamp member, under the L.S.N. name (Leeza Sei Nanao).Sei Nanao

  • Officially left in March 1993 (as mentioned in the Shōten 3).Kazue Nakamori

  • Officially left in March 1993 (as mentioned in the Shōten 3).Shinya Ōmi

  • Officially left in March 1993 (as mentioned in the Shōten 3). He was the only male member of the team, and is related to Tamayo Akiyama.Guests

Like many dōjinshi groups, Clamp did welcome guests in their team from time to time. For example, Yuzuru Inoue is often listed as the twelfth member of the group but was only a guest.


When asked about the universal popularity of Clamp's works, John Oppliger of AnimeNation stated that although it is "not based on originality [or] their artistic skill", they possess a distinct style that "perfectly mesh[es] the conventional attributes of shōnen and shōjo manga". He also pointed out that Clamp often "recycles" characters from their own earlier works, which gave rise to "a loosely defined 'Clamp universe' that gives much of their work a unifying tone", and creates "absorbing, complex narratives that appeal to both male and female readers". All these factors result in "a cult following devoted to anything and everything the group publishes".


Future works

Name Volumes Released Current Status
"Mangettes" (2009) Simultaneous joint global collaboration with Dark Horse Comics.

Unfinished/current works

Name Volumes Released Current Status
Clover 4 Ran in the now cancelled Amie magazine.
3 Ran in Monthly Sunday Gene-X for seven chapters. Returned to publication in the November 2006 edition of Newtype magazine.
1 The project was dropped after only a few chapters, though a recent interview has stated that Clamp would like to finish the work in the future.
3 Not running in any magazine. According to Clamp, it will resume production soon.
24 Running since 2003 in Weekly Shōnen Magazine.
18 Not running in any magazine since March 2003. Some social problems in Japan prevent Kadokawa from releasing further chapters. New chapters have surfaced on online manga sites.
13 Running weekly since 2003 in Young Magazine.

Completed Works

Name Publisher and Series Volumes Released
Kadokawa Shoten
Kadokawa Comics Series
KC Deluxe
Young Magazine KC Deluxe
Kodansha 12
Kadokawa Shoten
Asuka Comics DX
Kadokawa Shoten
Newtype 100% Comics
KC Deluxe
Kadokawa Shoten
Newtype 100% Comics / Kadokawa Comics Series

Kadokawa Shoten
Newtype 100% Comics Extra / Kadokawa Comics Series
Kadokawa Shoten
Young Rose Comics DX
Wings Comics
Kadokawa Shoten
Asuka Comics DX
Kadokawa Shoten
Asuka Comics
Wings Comics / Wings Library
Wish Kadokawa Shoten
Asuka Comics DX

Early Works

Name Publisher and Series Volumes Released
Shinkigensha 7
Shinkigensha 1

Short works

These are short works that were only available in monthly magazines; they were never published in tankōbon form.
Name Year Published Featured In
1989 Kobunsha Val Pretty
1990 Fusion Product Genki Tokuhon
1990 Kadokawa Shoten Newtype Comic Genki no Moto
1990 Hakusensha Series
1994 Shinshokan South Summer
1994 Kadokawa Shoten Monthly Mystery DX
1996 Kadokawa Shoten Monthly Shōsetsu Asuka
2002 Kodansha Young Magazine Zoukan : Sports Sō
2002 Kodansha Young Magazine
Name Collaborated With Contribution
Tomiyuki Matsumoto Manga illustrations and script
Sunrise Character design, ending illustrations (season two)
Takeshi Okazaki Manga script
Madhouse Production Character design
Night Head George Iida Novel illustrations (2 Volumes)
Kamon Nanami・Akira Manga illustrations (1 volume)
Hata Masanori Manga illustrations and script (1 Volume)
Yoshiki Tanaka Novel illustrations (12 volumes)
Kamon Nanami Novel illustrations (1 volumes)
Madhouse Production Character design

Clamp has authored other dōjinshi that are not listed above. Having started as a dōjinshi group, most of Clamp's dōjinshi are from their earlier years. A number of Clamp's earlier works are also not listed above.

International publishing status



General references

External links

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