Artist: Takashi Murakami
Title: DOB (Black)
Medium: Lithograph in Colors on Wove Paper
Size: 18-1/2" x 18-1/2"
Edition: 94/100, Published by Kaikai Kiki Co. Ltd., Tokyo
Inscription: Signed, numbered, and dated in pencil lower right
Documentation: Includes Gallery Certificate of Authenticity
Through his artwork, Murakami explores the intersection of Japanese tradition and contemporary culture, inviting viewers to engage with his bold, playful, and often satirical creations. His unique artistic style and incorporation of recognizable characters have made him a highly influential figure in the art world, both in Japan and internationally. One of Murakami's most recognizable creations is his cartoon character, Mr. DOB. Created in 1993, Mr. DOB continues to feature in Murakami's artworks to this day. The character's appearance always bears a resemblance to Mickey Mouse, with large round ears, wide eyes, fluttering eyelashes, and pronounced teeth. Mr. DOB embodies the 'kawaii' aesthetic, which celebrates the Japanese culture of cuteness.
Murakami’s 2020 lithograph "DOB (Black)" features the character rendered in his iconic superflat style. Coined by Murakami himself, Superflat refers to a postmodern art movement that incorporates elements of traditional Japanese art, such as flatness and two-dimensionality, with the aesthetics of contemporary Japanese popular culture, particularly anime and manga. In addition to referencing the compositional qualities, "Superflat" is also used to describe the shallowness of consumer culture. It explores themes of consumerism, globalization, and the erosion of traditional values in contemporary society.
"DOB (Black)" is from an edition of 100 and measures 18-1/2" x 18-1/2". The work is signed, numbered, and dated on the front lower margin and comes with a gallery certificate of authenticity from Modern Artifact.
About Takashi Murakami
Takashi Murakami is a Japanese contemporary artist known for his vibrant and whimsical creations that blend elements of traditional Japanese art with contemporary pop culture. Born on February 1, 1962, in Tokyo, Murakami grew up during a time of rapid cultural and technological change in Japan.
Murakami studied traditional Nihonga painting at the Tokyo University of the Arts, where he earned his BFA, MFA, and PhD. However, he quickly became disillusioned with the constraints of the traditional art world and sought to create a new style that would reflect the hyper-modern society he saw around him.
In the late 1990s, Murakami began creating works that combined the bright colors and bold graphic style of anime and manga with the techniques and imagery of traditional Japanese art. These works, which he termed "Superflat", explored themes of consumerism, globalization, and the erosion of traditional values in contemporary society.
Using his unique blend of high and low art, Murakami has collaborated with major fashion brands such as Louis Vuitton, creating limited-edition bags and accessories adorned with his signature characters and motifs. His collaborations with the fashion and music industries have helped bring his art to a wider audience and blur the boundaries between art and commerce.
Throughout his career, Murakami has exhibited his work in prestigious institutions around the world, including the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles, the Brooklyn Museum, and the Palace of Versailles. His colorful and playful creations have garnered critical acclaim and have made him one of the most recognizable and influential artists of his generation.
In addition to his visual art, Murakami has also ventured into other creative realms, directing documentaries, producing animated films, and even trying his hand at fashion design. His multidisciplinary approach reflects his desire to explore new artistic territories and challenge established norms.
Takashi Murakami's unique blend of traditional and contemporary influences, along with his ability to create whimsical and thought-provoking artworks, has made him a groundbreaking figure in the art world. His work continues to captivate audiences globally and has solidified his status as one of the most important artists of our time.