I just got back from an evening at the Brooklyn Museum where I was invited to preview their latest exhibit by one of my two favorite living artists modern artists Takashi Murakami.
For those who may not know his work a quick background. Murakami gained an international reputation for merging fine art with popular Japanese anime films and manga cartoons to create his theory called Superflat. The theory and his art explore art as contrast between hi and low art, east and west, cute and dark themes. It creates a fantastical universe of creatures like Mr. DOB, a Mickey Mouse-type character, and Mr. Pointy, another cartoonlike creature, inhabit this space alongside smiley-faced flowers and colorful mushrooms. All of it explores how mass-produced entertainment and consumerism are part of art. That concept reached it’s peak for him in 2002 when he teamed up with the fashion house Louis Vuitton and it’s creative director Marc Jacobs to reinvent the classic LV monogram and create a whole new visual language for the brand that came to life in brightly colored versions of the classic Vuitton handbags.
Murakami has been called the Japanese Andy Warhol because he creates everything from very large one of a kind painting to sculpture to small run lithographs that are produced through his studio in Queens. The studio in Queens is only interesting because Murakami is based out of Japan and every morning receives digital hi-res photos of every piece of work large and small for his review, comments and changes.
So if you are going to be in New York City any time soon be sure and swing by MOMA to see Design and the Elastic Mind and then head over to Brooklyn to check out Murakami because this is the shows second and final stop in the states. For those of you who aren’t going to be able to make it you can check out videos of the exhibit from it’s last stop in L.A. here though new pieces have been added for the NYC show.