Monday, July 4, 2011

Secret Japonisme Preview!

I hope everyone has been enjoying their day off - I just had some amazing kabobs in Glendale with Callie and have spent the rest of the day drinking tea and putting the finishing touches on the online preview portfolio for Japonisme. I normally won't post work-in-progress but I've been chugging along on this project for about a year now and wanted to give a tiny view in to what is going on with my newest work!

You can skip the rambling and jump straight to the portfolio!

For those of you who don't know, Japonisme is a term that refers to both an object (chairs, mirrors, clothing, etc.) made in Western Europe in the style of Japanese goods as well as more broadly Europe's obsession with Japan, Japanese art, culture, people and aesthetics during the 1800's after the Black Fleet forcibly reopened the country to Western Trade. From the ubiquitous stories of Monet trying to find wood block prints used to wrap goods, to Whistler's fireworks paintings, to Van Gogh's obsession with Japanese prints both the avant art word and the popular imagination were obsessed with the ideas of the East as exotic and sensual. 

So too today, we have the virtual Vocaloid pop star Miku selling out shows Los Angeles, anime is a major player in the entertainment world, whole magazines are dedicated to Japanese-influenced and -obsessed art (such as Giant Robot and Juxtapose). Not to mention the leigons of Hello Kitty fanatics and the towering art phenomenon that is Takashi Murakami and his "Superflat" artist circle. We are experiencing a new Japonisme era.

Built out of anime advertisements, fan-created obsessive porn comics (hentai doujinshi), fragments and shadows of the rich and troubled history of Japanese immigrants in California, Japanese photo books, and amateur origami "Japonisme" as a project tries to pry at the often ignored but overtly present ideas of orientalism, exoticism, aesthetic differences, art history, high culture vs fan culture novelty and radical inspiration that swirl around the far edges of this new worldwide Japonisme of the 2000's.

Now that you've read more, hop over and take a look!

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