Exhibit Surveys Japanese Art and Pop Culture
At the Museum of Contemporary Art, a new exhibit entitled "Superflat" explores the tendency in Japanese art toward two-dimensionality. Organized by artist Takashi Murakami, the exhibition features painting, photography, works on paper, video, computer animation, fashion, cartoons and sculpture from the 1980s and 1990s by 19 leading Japanese artists. The inaugural exhibition at the MOCA Gallery at the Pacific Design Center remains on view through May 6.
A central influence on the concept of "Superflat" is the Japanese cartoon culture of "manga," where enthusiasts are lured into a magical world separate from reality. The two-dimensionality of "manga" often results in an overall patterning and flattening of colors and shapes, which, according to Murakami, "provides a parallel space in which to escape from the pressures of society. "The "super" in "Superflat" not only emphasizes the planar qualities of much of the work, but it also denotes a special, charged characteristic or attitude.
The exhibit explores how contemporary Japanese artists working in the two-dimensional medium of "anime" or Japanese animation are influenced by classic works from Japanese art. …