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Home » Go See – London: Takashi Murakami at Gagosian Gallery Britannia Street through August 5th

Go See – London: Takashi Murakami at Gagosian Gallery Britannia Street through August 5th

July 25th, 2011


Takashi Murakami, 3M Girl (2011), via Gagosian Gallery
Currently on view at Gagosian‘s Britannia Street gallery in London is an exhibit of recent paintings and sculptures by Takashi Murakami. The artist is renowned for his “Super-flat” style which employs traditional Japanese painting techniques and compositions to create a mixture of historical and contemporary subject with elements of animé, Pop, and otaku content within a flattened representational picture-plane.  In these new works he presents his ambivalence over the legacy of cosmopolitan painter Kuroda Seiki, an artist known for bringing yōga or Western-style painting to Japan durin the Meiji period.

More text and images after the jump…


Takashi Murakami, Installation View, via Gagosian Gallery

In these works n Murakami’s recreates contemporary shunga, a long established genre dating back to the Edo period which sought to express a varied world of present-day sexual possibilities. It was often referred to as the creation of “pornotopia” or an idealized fantastical erotic world parallel to contemporary urban life. Murakami’s work presents graphic depictions of exaggerated male and female genitals are set against playful and delirious backgrounds.



Takashi Murakami, Installation View, via Gagosian Gallery

Murakami takes Kuroda’s famous triptych, Wisdom, Impression, Sentiment (c.1900) and reclaims it by applying traditional nihonga techniques such as gold- and silver-leafing. He also transforms the artist’s nude figures into a manga style.  Kuroda’s work was controversial when it was first shown because of its content. Murakami nevertheless reminds the viewer in paintings such as Shunga: Gibbons (2010) and Shunga: Bow Wow (2010) that Japan had embraced erotic art as early as the twelfth century.



Takashi Murakami, Installation View, via Gagosian Gallery

Murakami continues this theme with sculptural works which features collaborations with artists working in Japan’s popular otaku culture such as Seiji Matsuyama and BOME, a figure sculptor who worked jointly with Murakami on his first life-size sculpture, Miss Ko2 (1997), a Playboy fantasy sculpture recreated into a cute manga form. The work in this exhibition, Nurse Ko2 (2011) recalls the earlier sculpture through the figure’s sexy uniform, long legs and big bust. In 3-Meter Girl (2011) the artist creates an absurd almost delirious figure featuring overly protruding and disproportionate breasts.



Takashi Murakami, Installation View, via Gagosian Gallery

Mr Big Mushroom (2011) features a finely polished metal penis of great proportions while Miss Clam (2011) is a welcoming metal vagina. Both sculptures emphasize the continuous obsession with sexuality in present-day society.



Takashi Murakami, Installation View, via Gagosian Gallery



Takashi Murakami, Installation View, via Gagosian Gallery

Related Links:

Exhibition Page [Gagosian Gallery]
Murakami Finds his Art Too Pricey [Bloomberg]                                                                                   
Takashi Murakami’s Erotic Show at Gagosian London
[StyleBistro]
Takashi Murakami, Gagosian Gallery – review
[Evening Standard]                                                 
Artistic Sweeteners
[The Guardian]                                                                                                         
Takashi Murakami’s New Gagosian Show in London: Four Visions of Oversexed Anime Porn
[LA Weekly]
Oversized and Oversexed, Murakami Mines the Past with Racy New Gagosian Show in London [Artinfo]

 

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