There’s a stunning new exhibition of paintings and sculptures by Takashi Murakami at the Gagosian Gallery in London.
I think the Japanese male sexual complex originated in the two-dimensional world –animation, games and so on – which then transferred to small three-dimensional sculptures. But before my sculptures Miss Ko (1997) and My Lonesome Cowboy (1998), it had never been represented life-size.
In his distinctive “Superflat” style, which employs highly refined, traditional Japanese painting techniques and formats to depict a charged mix of historical subject matter, Pop, animé and otaku content within a flattened representational picture-plane, Murakami moves freely within an ever-expanding field of aesthetic issues and cultural inspirations. Parallel to his distinctive toonish formulations of utopian and dystopian themes, he has recollected and revitalized religious and secular narratives of transcendence and enlightenment favoured by non-conformist Japanese artists from the Early Modern era, commonly considered to be counterpart to the Western Romantic tradition. By situating himself within their legacy of bold and lively individualism in a manner that is entirely his own, he revealed himself to be an artist in dialogue with history and very much of his time.
To read more: Gagosian Gallery
June 27 – August 5, 2011
6-24 Britannia Street
London WC1X 9JD
T. 44.207.841.9960 F. 44.207.841.9961
Hours: Tue-Sat 10-6