Takashi Murakami Will Recreate His Art Factory for His First Museum Show in Russia
Moscow's Garage Museum will host the exhibition.
Takashi Murakami, his long beard flecked with grey, was on hand on March 22 when Moscow’s Garage Museum of Contemporary Art announced its upcoming survey of the Japanese contemporary art star’s work. The show, which will open September 29, is the first major presentation of the world-conquering artist’s work in Russia.
Drawing on many different aspects of Japanese culture, Murakami’s oeuvre will be divided into five sections, each exploring a different aspect of his practice. “Sutajito,” for instance, will include an installation recreating the artist’s factory, where his studio assistants will produce work for the duration of the exhibition. This promises to offer unprecedented behind-the-scenes access to Murakami’s large-scale art-making operations, handled by the Kaikai Kiki art production and art management corporation that he opened in 1996.
The exhibition also aims to provide a broader context for the artist’s work within Japanese culture. A section titled “The Little Boy and the Fat Man,” named for both an earlier piece by the artist and the atomic bombs that were dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945, explores the effect of the nuclear attack on Japanese visual culture. It will feature Sea Breeze (1992), one of the artist’s first installations.
Manga and anime take center stage in the “Kawaii”—Japanese for cute—section, featuring popular Japanese characters such as Pokémon and Hello Kitty together with Murakami’s own contributions to the genre from his 2013 film Jellyfish Eyes. There will be a screening room for the feature-length movie, as well as preparatory models of the animated monster-like characters.
The exhibition will begin with the “Geijutsu” section, focusing on the artist’s mastery as a painter. A fifth section, “Asobi & Kazari,” will fill the museum’s non-exhibition spaces with “parasite ornaments” decorating the cafe, bookshop, and façade.
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