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About the WorkIn 2011, Takashi Murakami debuted new paintings that were a tribute to Yves Klein, the late French artist who is considered a leading proponent of Nouveau réalisme and developer of the famous International Klein Blue (IKB). This deep blue color in “An Homage to IKB, 1957 D” was used liberally by Murakami in his flower and skull motifs for the show as well as one of the monochromatic works that were offered in this new body of work.
“I think that most people would agree that color is among the most important elements of my work and when we look back on the life of Yves Klein, the reason becomes clear. Color is much like the means of Japanese Zen Buddhism; it is a tool that can instantaneously guide people to a world outside themselves.” Murakami’s “An Homage to IKB, 1957 D” is an offset lithograph with a cold stamp.
About the Artist
One of the most acclaimed artists to emerge from postwar Asia, Takashi Murakami—“the Warhol of Japan”—is known for his contemporary Pop synthesis of fine art and popular culture, particularly his use of a boldly graphic and colorful anime and manga cartoon style. Murakami became famous in the 1990s for his “Superflat” theory and for organizing the paradigmatic exhibition of that title, which linked the origins of contemporary Japanese visual culture to historical Japanese art. His output includes paintings, sculptures, drawings, animations, and collaborations with brands such as Louis Vuitton. “Japanese people accept that art and commerce will be blended; and in fact, they are surprised by the rigid and pretentious Western hierarchy of “high art’,” Murakami says. “In the West, it certainly is dangerous to blend the two because people will throw all sorts of stones. But that’s okay—I’m ready with my hard hat.”