Japan’s eclectic visual culture
by KOD Staff
Beyond the visual tropes of Hello Kitty, origami and manga, Japanese art reveals itself to be highly rich and complex, formed of paradoxes and contradictions. Tradition and modernity, modesty and eroticism, high art and kitsch are brought together in surprising ways where west meets east. No single visual style can define Japanese art, dispelling our fantasy of the exotic other. These spirited images provide a glimpse into Japan’s cultural melting-pot.
Toyohara Chikanobu, 'A Mirror of Japanese Nobility', 1887
Yayoi Kusama in 'Yellow Tree' furniture room at Aichi Triennale, 2010
Utagawa Kuniteru, 'Ten realms within the body', 1885
Poster for The National Bonds for the Sino-Japanese War Ministry of Finance, 1937
Modern Japanese Tattoo
Tomatsu Shomei, 'Hibakusha Tsuyo Kataoka', 1961
Takashi Murakami, 'Mr. DOB All Stars' (Oh My the Mr. DOB), 1998
Kikugawa Eizan, 'Haru No Raku' (Spring Pleasure), 1787-1867
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