Takashi Murakami (村上 隆) is a prolific contemporary Japanese artist, born Feb 1, 1962. He creates paintings & sculpture, as well as what are conventionally considered commercial media; fashion, merchandise, film & animation.
HAIKU Art Review: Takashi Murakami
Superflat empirePhoto: Muir Vidler
Pop art is his religion
3 faced ringmaster
Murakami is the founder & President of Kaikai Kiki Co, through which he manages the Hidari Zingaro & Kaikai Kiki Galleries & organizes the biannual art fair GEISAI.
Takashi Murakami was born & raised in Tokyo, Japan. From early on, he was an enthusiastic follower of animation & manga aspiring to one day work in the animation industry. He attended T.U.A Tokyo University of the Arts, originally seeking to acquire the drafting skills necessary to become an animator, but eventually majored in Nihonga, the ‘traditional’ style of Japanese painting
Juxtapoz x Superflat curated by Takashi Murakami & Evan Pricco
"When I first began actively pursuing projects with young artists, I ran into the same problems with all of them; selfishness, irresponsibility & a lack of both guts & ambition.
In response, I began drilling them on the following three points; 1. Art world etiquette 2. A sense of honor 3. Learning the rules.
Without the three things above, an artist cannot survive in the art world. I truly believe that this is what defines those who achieve success."
In 2000, Murakami published his “Superflat” theory in the catalogue for a group exhibition of the same name that he curated for MOCA LA. The theory posits that there is a legacy of flat, 2D imagery which has existed throughout Japanese art history & continues today in manga & anime. This style differentiates itself from the western approach in its emphasis on surface & use of flat planes of color.
Superflat also served as a commentary on post-war Japanese society in which, Murakami argues, differences in social class & popular taste have flattened, producing a culture with little distinction between high & low.
Photo: Mike Bruce - Via: Gagosian Gallery
He also developed his own pop icon, “Mr. DOB,” which would later develop into a form of self-portraiture, the first of several endlessly morphing & recurring motifs seen throughout his work. Though he garnered attention, many of his early pieces were not initially well received in Japan.
Takashi Murakami: EGO - Qatar 2012
Takashi Murakami 村上 隆