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Takashi Murakami

Takashi Murakami, DOB’s March, 1995 Acrylic on canvas mounted on board, 27 ⅝ × 39 ⅜ inches (70.1 × 100 cm)© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved

Takashi Murakami, DOB’s March, 1995

Acrylic on canvas mounted on board, 27 ⅝ × 39 ⅜ inches (70.1 × 100 cm)
© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved

Takashi Murakami, 727, 1996 Acrylic on canvas mounted on board, 9 feet 10 inches × 14 feet 9 inches (3 × 4.5 m), Museum of Modern Art, New York© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved

Takashi Murakami, 727, 1996

Acrylic on canvas mounted on board, 9 feet 10 inches × 14 feet 9 inches (3 × 4.5 m), Museum of Modern Art, New York
© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved

Takashi Murakami, DOB in the Strange Forest, 1999 FRP, resin, fiberglass, acrylic, and iron, 60 × 144 inches (152.4 × 365.8 cm)© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved

Takashi Murakami, DOB in the Strange Forest, 1999

FRP, resin, fiberglass, acrylic, and iron, 60 × 144 inches (152.4 × 365.8 cm)
© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved

Takashi Murakami, When robbed of four limbs, against all odds, the heart is set free., 2007 Acrylic on canvas mounted on board with silver leaf, 71 × 84 inches (180.3 × 213.4 cm)© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved

Takashi Murakami, When robbed of four limbs, against all odds, the heart is set free., 2007

Acrylic on canvas mounted on board with silver leaf, 71 × 84 inches (180.3 × 213.4 cm)
© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved

Takashi Murakami, Flower Ball (3-D), Kindergarten, 2007 Acrylic and silver gold leaf on canvas mounted on board, 39 ½ × 39 ½ inches (100.3 × 100.3 cm)© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved

Takashi Murakami, Flower Ball (3-D), Kindergarten, 2007

Acrylic and silver gold leaf on canvas mounted on board, 39 ½ × 39 ½ inches (100.3 × 100.3 cm)
© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved

Takashi Murakami, TIME – lime green – BOKAN, 2009 Acrylic on canvas mounted on aluminum frame, 71 × 71 inches (180.3 × 180.3 cm)© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved

Takashi Murakami, TIME – lime green – BOKAN, 2009

Acrylic on canvas mounted on aluminum frame, 71 × 71 inches (180.3 × 180.3 cm)
© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved

Takashi Murakami, Lots, Lots of Kaikai and Kiki, 2009 Acrylic and platinum leaf on canvas mounted on aluminum frame, in 5 parts, overall: 118 × 239 ½ inches (299.7 × 608.3 cm)© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved

Takashi Murakami, Lots, Lots of Kaikai and Kiki, 2009

Acrylic and platinum leaf on canvas mounted on aluminum frame, in 5 parts, overall: 118 × 239 ½ inches (299.7 × 608.3 cm)
© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved

Takashi Murakami, Dragon In Clouds - Indigo Blue, 2010 Acrylic on canvas mounted on board, 143 × 708 ⅝ inches (363.2 × 1800 cm)© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved

Takashi Murakami, Dragon In Clouds - Indigo Blue, 2010

Acrylic on canvas mounted on board, 143 × 708 ⅝ inches (363.2 × 1800 cm)
© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved

Takashi Murakami, Who’s Afraid of Red, Yellow, Blue and Death, 2010 Acrylic on canvas on aluminum frame, 118 × 92 ½ inches (299.7 × 235 cm)© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved

Takashi Murakami, Who’s Afraid of Red, Yellow, Blue and Death, 2010

Acrylic on canvas on aluminum frame, 118 × 92 ½ inches (299.7 × 235 cm)
© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved

Takashi Murakami, Big Box PKo2 (Sculpture based on papercraft illustration by Sanpati, design by NC Empire, full scale sculpture by Lucky-Wide Co., Ltd.), 2011 Carbon fiber and acrylic, height: 84 ⅝ inches (215 cm)© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved

Takashi Murakami, Big Box PKo2 (Sculpture based on papercraft illustration by Sanpati, design by NC Empire, full scale sculpture by Lucky-Wide Co., Ltd.), 2011

Carbon fiber and acrylic, height: 84 ⅝ inches (215 cm)
© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved

Takashi Murakami, Blue Flowers & Skulls, 2012 Acrylic on canvas mounted panel, 78 ¾ × 60 ¼ inches (200 × 153 cm)© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved

Takashi Murakami, Blue Flowers & Skulls, 2012

Acrylic on canvas mounted panel, 78 ¾ × 60 ¼ inches (200 × 153 cm)
© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved

Takashi Murakami, Self-Portrait of the Manifold Worries of a Manifoldly Distressed Artist, 2012 Acrylic on canvas mounted on board, 59 × 59 inches (150 × 150 cm)© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved

Takashi Murakami, Self-Portrait of the Manifold Worries of a Manifoldly Distressed Artist, 2012

Acrylic on canvas mounted on board, 59 × 59 inches (150 × 150 cm)
© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved

Takashi Murakami, And Then x 6 (Gold & White: The Superflat Method), 2012 Acrylic and gold leaf on canvas mounted on board, 39 ⅜ × 39 ⅜ inches (100 × 100 cm)© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved

Takashi Murakami, And Then x 6 (Gold & White: The Superflat Method), 2012

Acrylic and gold leaf on canvas mounted on board, 39 ⅜ × 39 ⅜ inches (100 × 100 cm)
© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved

Takashi Murakami, Tan Tan Bo - In Communication, 2014 Acrylic on canvas, 141 ¾ × 141 ¾ inches (360 × 360 cm)© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved

Takashi Murakami, Tan Tan Bo - In Communication, 2014

Acrylic on canvas, 141 ¾ × 141 ¾ inches (360 × 360 cm)
© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved

Takashi Murakami, Invoking the Vitality of a Universe Beyond Imagination, 2014 Mixed media, 32 ⅜ × 78 ¾ × 37 inches (82 × 200 × 94 cm)© 2014 Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved

Takashi Murakami, Invoking the Vitality of a Universe Beyond Imagination, 2014

Mixed media, 32 ⅜ × 78 ¾ × 37 inches (82 × 200 × 94 cm)
© 2014 Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved

Takashi Murakami, Korin: Dark Matter, 2015 Acrylic, gold leaf, and platinum leaf on canvas mounted on aluminum frame, 63 × 59 ½ inches (160 × 151.1 cm)© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved

Takashi Murakami, Korin: Dark Matter, 2015

Acrylic, gold leaf, and platinum leaf on canvas mounted on aluminum frame, 63 × 59 ½ inches (160 × 151.1 cm)
© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved

Takashi Murakami, To be titled, 2016 Acrylic and gold leaf on canvas, 15 ¾ × 15 ¾ inches (40 × 40 cm)© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved

Takashi Murakami, To be titled, 2016

Acrylic and gold leaf on canvas, 15 ¾ × 15 ¾ inches (40 × 40 cm)
© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved

Takashi Murakami, Homage to Francis Bacon (Study of Isabel Rawsthorne), 2017 Acrylic and platinum leaf on canvas mounted on aluminum frame, 47 ¼ × 47 ¼ inches (120 × 120 cm)© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved

Takashi Murakami, Homage to Francis Bacon (Study of Isabel Rawsthorne), 2017

Acrylic and platinum leaf on canvas mounted on aluminum frame, 47 ¼ × 47 ¼ inches (120 × 120 cm)
© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved

Takashi Murakami and Virgil Abloh, Our Spot 1, 2018 Acrylic on canvas mounted on aluminum frame, 39 ⅜ × 39 ⅜ × 2 inches (100 × 100 × 5 cm)©︎ Virgil Abloh and ©︎ Takashi Murakami

Takashi Murakami and Virgil Abloh, Our Spot 1, 2018

Acrylic on canvas mounted on aluminum frame, 39 ⅜ × 39 ⅜ × 2 inches (100 × 100 × 5 cm)
©︎ Virgil Abloh and ©︎ Takashi Murakami

About

We want to see the newest things. That is because we want to see the future, even if only momentarily. It is the moment in which, even if we don’t completely understand what we have glimpsed, we are nonetheless touched by it. This is what we have come to call art.
—Takashi Murakami

Drawing from traditional Japanese painting, sci-fi, anime, and the global art market, Takashi Murakami creates paintings, sculptures, and films populated by repeated motifs and mutating characters of his own creation. His wide-ranging work embodies an intersection of pop culture, history, and fine art.

Murakami earned a BA, MFA, and PhD from Tokyo University of the Arts, where he studied nihonga (traditional Japanese painting). In 1996 he established the Hiropon Factory, a studio/workshop that in subsequent years grew into an art production and artist management company, now known as Kaikai Kiki Co. Ltd.

Since the early 1990s Murakami has invented characters that combine aspects of popular cartoons from Japan, Europe, and the US—from his first Mr. DOB, who sometimes serves as a stand-in for the artist himself, to various anime characters and smiling flowers, bears, and lions. These figures act as icons and symbols—hosts for more complex themes of violence, technology, and fantasy.

In 2000 Murakami curated Superflat, an exhibition featuring works by artists whose techniques and mediums synthesize various aspects of Japanese visual culture, from ukiyo-e (woodblock prints of the Edo period) to anime and kawaii (a particular cuteness in cartoons, handwriting, products, and more). With this exhibition, Murakami advanced his Superflat theory of art, which highlights the “flatness” of Japanese visual culture from traditional painting to contemporary subcultures in the context of World War II and its aftermath.

Murakami’s work extends to mass-produced items such as toys, key chains, and t-shirts. In 2002 he began a multiyear collaboration with Marc Jacobs on the redesign of the Louis Vuitton monogram. Murakami then took the radical step of directly incorporating the Vuitton monograms and patterns into his paintings and sculptures. While Murakami’s imagery may appear to present unprecedented characters and forms, many contain explicit art historical references, and some are even direct contemporary updates on traditional Japanese works.

In 2009 Murakami and the esteemed art historian Nobuo Tsuji began a creative dialogue centered on a group of Japanese artists known as the Edo eccentrics. This collaboration led to an exhibition at the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston in 2017, for which Murakami and Tsuji selected Japanese works from the museum’s collection and showed them alongside works by Murakami. The latter included Dragon in Clouds—Red Mutation: The version I painted myself in annoyance after Professor Nobuo Tsuji told me, “Why don’t you paint something yourself for once?” (2010), a red monochrome version of the famous eighteenth-century painting Dragon and Clouds by Soga Shōhaku.

Following the Tōhoku earthquake of 2011 and the subsequent nuclear crisis at Fukushima, Murakami began deeply exploring the impact of historical natural disasters on Japanese art and culture. In his 2014 Gagosian exhibition at West 24th Street in New York, In the Land of the Dead, Stepping on the Tail of a Rainbow, he created an immersive installation of eclectic arhats; deliquescing clones of his fictional creature Mr. DOB; and karajishi, the mythic lions that guard Japanese Buddhist temples, that visitors entered through a replica of a sanmon (sacred gate).

Not only does Murakami merge different time periods, styles, and subject matter in his work, but his approach to art crosses the boundaries between gallery, studio, art fair, and media as well. Along with creating paintings and sculptures, he has hosted art fairs for emerging artists, curated exhibitions, and made films featuring his many characters and motifs. Combining fantasy, science, and history, he shows that none of these categories can be considered in isolation.

Takashi Murakami cover and Andreas Gursky cover for Gagosian Quarterly, Summer 2022 magazine

Now available
Gagosian Quarterly Summer 2022

The Summer 2022 issue of Gagosian Quarterly is now available, with two different covers—featuring Takashi Murakami’s 108 Bonnō MURAKAMI.FLOWERS (2022) and Andreas Gursky’s V & R II (2022).

A Takashi Murakami painting of a female avatar with blue and pink hair: CLONE X #59 Harajuku-style Angel

Takashi Murakami and RTFKT: An Arrow through History

Bridging the digital and the physical realms, the three-part presentation of paintings and sculptures that make up Takashi Murakami: An Arrow through History at Gagosian, New York, builds on the ongoing collaboration between the artist and RTFKT Studios. Here, Murakami and the RTFKT team explain the collaborative process, the necessity of cognitive revolution, the metaverse, and the future of art to the Quarterly’s Wyatt Allgeier.

Takashi Murakami with works from his ceramics collection.

Murakami on Ceramics

Takashi Murakami writes about his commitment to the work of Japanese ceramic artists associated with the seikatsu kōgei, or lifestyle crafts, movement.

Takashi Murakami with his dog, Pom, Full Steam Ahead, Dark Matter in the Farthest Black Reaches of Visible Space, and Blue Flowers & Skulls (all 2012), Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd., studio, Saitama, Japan, 2012

In Conversation
Takashi Murakami and Hans Ulrich Obrist

Hans Ulrich Obrist interviews the artist on the occasion of his 2012 exhibition Takashi Murakami: Flowers & Skulls at Gagosian, Hong Kong.

Takashi Murakami at LACMA

Takashi Murakami at LACMA

In a conversation recorded at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Takashi Murakami describes the process behind three major large-scale paintings, including Qinghua (2019), inspired by the motifs painted on a Chinese Yuan Dynasty porcelain vase.

“AMERICA TOO”

“AMERICA TOO”

Join us for an exclusive look at the installation and opening reception of Murakami & Abloh: “AMERICA TOO”.

Future History: Takashi Murakami and Virgil Abloh

In Conversation
Future History: Takashi Murakami and Virgil Abloh

Following their artistic collaboration in London, Takashi Murakami and Virgil Abloh, the recently appointed Louis Vuitton menswear designer, spoke with Derek Blasberg about how they met, their admiration for each other, and the power of collaboration to educate and impassion new audiences.

Nobuo Tsuji vs. Takashi Murakami

Nobuo Tsuji vs. Takashi Murakami

From 2009 to 2011 the eminent art historian Nobuo Tsuji and Takashi Murakami engaged in a reimagined e-awase (painting contest). In this twenty-one-round contest, newly published in Battle Royale! Japanese Art History, Tsuji selects historical works and Murakami responds creatively. Round 6 centers on the Edo Eccentric painter Soga Shōhaku and his monumental Dragon and Clouds (1763).

Gagosian Quarterly Spring 2018

Gagosian Quarterly Spring 2018

The Spring 2018 Gagosian Quarterly with a cover by Ed Ruscha is now available for order.

Fairs, Events & Announcements

Left: Takashi Murakami. Right: Etsuko Price

In Conversation

Chasing the Eccentrics
Takashi Murakami in Conversation with Etsuko Price

Friday, May 20, 2022, 4:30pm
Japan House, Los Angeles
www.japanhousela.com

Presented in conjunction with the exhibition Takashi Murakami: Stepping on the Tail of a Rainbow, on view at the Broad, Los Angeles, from May 21 to September 25, 2022, this conversation between Takashi Murakami and Etsuko Price—who, with her husband Joe, has amassed an unparalleled collection of traditional Japanese art focused on the Edo period—will explore how traditional Japanese painting has influenced and inspired Murakami’s creative practice. Moderated by Yuko Kaifu, president of Japan House in Los Angeles, the conversation will also offer a window into the long friendship that Murakami and the Prices have developed over their passion for traditional Japanese art. The conversation will be in both Japanese and English. To attend the event in person or online, purchase tickets at eventbrite.com.

Left: Takashi Murakami. Right: Etsuko Price

Gagosian’s booth at Art Basel Hong Kong 2022. Artwork, left to right: © Georg Baselitz; © Louise Bonnet; © Zeng Fanzhi; © 2019 Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved; © Rudolf Stingel. Photo: Martin Wong

Art Fair

Art Basel Hong Kong 2022

May 27–29, 2022, booth 1C15
Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre
www.artbasel.com

Gagosian is pleased to participate in Art Basel Hong Kong 2022 with an ensemble of contemporary works by international artists. The gallery’s presentation will feature works by artists including Georg BaselitzLouise BonnetEdmund de WaalUrs FischerKatharina GrosseMark GrotjahnJennifer GuidiSimon HantaïHao LiangDamien HirstThomas HouseagoTetsuya IshidaAlex IsraelEwa JuszkiewiczRick LoweTakashi MurakamiAlbert OehlenNam June PaikGiuseppe PenoneRudolf PolanszkySterling RubyEd RuschaJenny SavilleJim ShawRudolf StingelSpencer SweeneyRachel Whiteread, and Zeng Fanzhi.

Gagosian’s booth at Art Basel Hong Kong 2022. Artwork, left to right: © Georg Baselitz; © Louise Bonnet; © Zeng Fanzhi; © 2019 Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved; © Rudolf Stingel. Photo: Martin Wong

Rachel Whiteread, Untitled (November), 2020 (detail) © Rachel Whiteread. Photo: Prudence Cuming Associates Ltd.

Art Fair

Zona Maco 2022

February 9–13, 2022, booth B115
Centro Citibanamex, Mexico City
www.zsonamaco.com

Gagosian is pleased to announce its return to Zona Maco México Arte Contemporáneo for the first time since 2018; significantly, this is also the gallery’s first in-person art fair of 2022. Gagosian is presenting a specially curated selection of dynamic paintings, sculptures, and works on paper by iconic figures long associated with the gallery, juxtaposed with works by key contemporary artists. Many of the featured artists are being represented at Zona Maco for the first time.

Rachel Whiteread, Untitled (November), 2020 (detail) © Rachel Whiteread. Photo: Prudence Cuming Associates Ltd.

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Museum Exhibitions

Installation view, Takashi Murakami: Stepping on the Tail of a Rainbow, The Broad, Los Angeles, May 21–September 25, 2022. Artwork © 2022 Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved. Photo: Joshua White

On View

Takashi Murakami
Stepping on the Tail of a Rainbow

Through September 25, 2022
The Broad, Los Angeles
www.thebroad.org

This exhibition, which includes all of Takashi Murakami’s works in the Broad collection as well as key loans, features eighteen works created throughout his career and new immersive environments developed in tandem with the artist and his studio, Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. In these works, spanning sculpture, painting, wallpaper, and immersive installations, the artist explores subject matter such as globalization, postwar Japan, pop culture, and religious iconography.

Installation view, Takashi Murakami: Stepping on the Tail of a Rainbow, The Broad, Los Angeles, May 21–September 25, 2022. Artwork © 2022 Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved. Photo: Joshua White

Jennifer Guidi, Seeking Hearts (Black MT, Pink Sand, Pink CS, Pink Ground), 2021 © Jennifer Guidi. Photo: Brica Wilcox

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Artists Inspired by Music
Interscope Reimagined

January 30–February 13, 2022
Los Angeles County Museum of Art
www.lacma.org

To mark the thirtieth anniversary of Interscope Records, the company invited artists to select albums and songs from Interscope’s groundbreaking catalogue and fostered exchanges between artists and musicians to generate resonant pairings. The exhibition, which includes more than fifty works, brings an intergenerational group of visual artists into dialogue with iconic musicians from the last three decades, providing a fresh perspective on influential music for the present moment. Work by John Currin, Jennifer Guidi, Damien Hirst, Titus Kaphar, Takashi Murakami, Richard Prince, Ed Ruscha, and Anna Weyant is included.

Jennifer Guidi, Seeking Hearts (Black MT, Pink Sand, Pink CS, Pink Ground), 2021 © Jennifer Guidi. Photo: Brica Wilcox

Takashi Murakami, Miss Ko², 1996–2011 © 2011 Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved

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Takashi Murakami in
Stars: Six Contemporary Artists from Japan to the World

July 31, 2020–January 3, 2021
Mori Art Museum, Tokyo
www.mori.art.museum

Presenting six artists whose careers propelled them beyond the confines of Japan, earning them acclaim around the world, this exhibition traces their journeys, from their earliest to latest works, and explores how each artist’s practice has been evaluated within the global context. Work by Takashi Murakami is included.

Takashi Murakami, Miss Ko², 1996–2011 © 2011 Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved

Takashi Murakami, Open Your Hands Wide, Embrace Happiness!, 2010 © 2010 Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved

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Happy!

October 27, 2019–July 5, 2020
NSU Art Museum, Nova Southeastern University, Fort Lauderdale, Florida
nsuartmuseum.org

Happy! presents contemporary works produced by artists who aim to engage the viewer emotionally. In their works, as in life, sorrow and happiness are intertwined. The exhibition follows a multigenerational trajectory from the mid-twentieth century to today. Work by Jeff Koons, Takashi Murakami, Richard Prince, and Andy Warhol is included.

Takashi Murakami, Open Your Hands Wide, Embrace Happiness!, 2010 © 2010 Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved

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Press

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