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Takashi Murakami

New Paintings

February 10–April 9, 2009
Davies Street, London

Takashi Murakami: New Paintings Installation view© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All Rights Reserved.

Takashi Murakami: New Paintings

Installation view
© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All Rights Reserved.

Takashi Murakami: New Paintings Installation view© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All Rights Reserved.

Takashi Murakami: New Paintings

Installation view
© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All Rights Reserved.

Takashi Murakami: New Paintings Installation view© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All Rights Reserved.

Takashi Murakami: New Paintings

Installation view
© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All Rights Reserved.

Takashi Murakami: New Paintings Installation view© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All Rights Reserved.

Takashi Murakami: New Paintings

Installation view
© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All Rights Reserved.

Takashi Murakami: New Paintings Installation view© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All Rights Reserved.

Takashi Murakami: New Paintings

Installation view
© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All Rights Reserved.

Takashi Murakami: New Paintings Installation view© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All Rights Reserved.

Takashi Murakami: New Paintings

Installation view
© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All Rights Reserved.

Takashi Murakami: New Paintings Installation view© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All Rights Reserved.

Takashi Murakami: New Paintings

Installation view
© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All Rights Reserved.

Takashi Murakami: New Paintings Installation view© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All Rights Reserved.

Takashi Murakami: New Paintings

Installation view
© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All Rights Reserved.

Takashi Murakami: New Paintings Installation view© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All Rights Reserved.

Takashi Murakami: New Paintings

Installation view
© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All Rights Reserved.

Takashi Murakami: New Paintings Installation view© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All Rights Reserved.

Takashi Murakami: New Paintings

Installation view
© Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All Rights Reserved.

Works Exhibited

Takashi Murakami, TIME - camouflage moss green, 2009 Acrylic on canvas mounted on aluminum frame, 118 × 118 inches (300 × 300 cm)© 2009 Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All Rights Reserved

Takashi Murakami, TIME - camouflage moss green, 2009

Acrylic on canvas mounted on aluminum frame, 118 × 118 inches (300 × 300 cm)
© 2009 Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All Rights Reserved

Takashi Murakami, BOKAN - camouflage pink, 2009 Acrylic on canvas mounted on aluminum frame, 118 × 118 inches (300 × 300 cm)© 2009 Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All Rights Reserved

Takashi Murakami, BOKAN - camouflage pink, 2009

Acrylic on canvas mounted on aluminum frame, 118 × 118 inches (300 × 300 cm)
© 2009 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, 5 panels: 118 × 239 ½ inches overall (299.7 × 608.3 cm)© 2009 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, 5 panels: 118 × 239 ½ inches overall (299.7 × 608.3 cm)
© 2009 Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All Rights Reserved

About

Gagosian is pleased to present an exhibition of new paintings by Takashi Murakami.

Beneath its bright and playful appearance, Murakami’s art deftly challenges the established dichotomies of high art and popular culture, East and West, present and past, life and death, humor and gravity, skepticism and belief. Visually, his work merges the dystopic worlds of popular anime and manga cartoons with the ultra-refined techniques of traditional Nihonga painting.

The centerpiece of Murakami’s compact exhibition is a vast and intricate five-panel painting which possesses the intensity of such masterworks as Tan Tan Bo Puking – a.k.a. Gero Tan (2002). If the jaunty cartoons Kaikai and Kiki have come to be seen as avatars of the opposing aspects of Murakami’s own character, then this immense and ambitious work, jostling with Kaikais and Kikis of every size, shape, and humor, can be interpreted to be his ultimate self-portrait, predicated on an identity that is very much of our time—culturally specific yet ambivalent, mercurial, and multiplicitous.

The Kaikai Kiki painting is flanked by new paintings in the Time Bokan series, begun in 1993. A key image in Murakami’s oeuvre, the skull-shaped mushroom cloud is borrowed from the eponymous Japanese anime TV series from the 1970s. The cloud symbolized the villains’ demise at the end of each episode, although they would unfailingly reappear in the next, to the delight of their young audience. Although the creators of the anime series could not have intended to send a positive message about the atomic bombing of Japan, let alone a safe return from it, the invincible villains became great favorites with children. By reviving this powerful image of Manichean paradox as a form of vanitas in relation to self-portraiture, Murakami provides a bold interpretation of a classical genre within a wholly new iconography.