Takashi Murakami - KYOBAI, Japanese Art and Culture London Wednesday, April 2, 2008 | Phillips

Create your first list.

Select an existing list or create a new list to share and manage lots you follow.

  • Provenance

    Marianne Boesky Gallery, New York

  • Exhibited

    New York, Rockefeller Center, Takashi Murakami: Reversed Double Helix, September 9 – October 12, 2003

  • Catalogue Essay

    With an international travelling retrospective featuring more than ninety works debuting at The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles,Takashi Murakami has cemented his position as one of contemporary art’s most innovative and important figures. Murakami’s work is characterized by bright patterns and flat slick surfaces. With its formal beauty and fantastical cast of characters, Murakami's art appeals on a purely visual level while simultaneously referencing science, religion, otaku culture, contemporary consumerism and Japanese art history. The current lot was first displayed as part of Reversed Double Helix – Murakami's ambitious outdoor solo-exhibition at Rockefeller Center in NewYork in 2003. Reversed Double Helix refers to the twisted spirals of DNA strands and plays upon Murakami’s oeuvre of mutant cartoon characters. The exhibition included the brightly coloured flags, sculptures, and gigantic balloons. A 30-foot-tall Buddha-like figure with a multi-coloured pointed head named ‘Tongari-kun’ which is Japanese for ‘Mr. Pointy’ was surrounded by four smaller pointyheaded figures. Short sculptures of mushrooms, a familiar motif in Murakami's artwork, were scattered around the ground and served as seating for visitors.Two eyeball patterned balloons of 30 feet in diameter floated above Rockefeller Center Ice Rink.The flags, also adorned with Murakami’s signature eyeball imagery, encircled the rink to complete the installation.

  • Artist Biography

    Takashi Murakami

    Japanese • 1962

    Takashi Murakami is best known for his contemporary combination of fine art and pop culture. He uses recognizable iconography like Mickey Mouse and cartoonish flowers and infuses it with Japanese culture. The result is a boldly colorful body of work that takes the shape of paintings, sculptures and animations.

    In the 1990s, Murakami founded the Superflat movement in an attempt to expose the "shallow emptiness of Japanese consumer culture." The artist plays on the familiar aesthetic of mangas, Japanese-language comics, to render works that appear democratic and accessible, all the while denouncing the universality and unspecificity of consumer goods. True to form, Murakami has done collaborations with numerous brands and celebrities including Kanye West, Louis Vuitton, Pharrell Williams and Google.

    View More Works


Untitled (Flags) from “Reversed Double Helix” at Rockefeller Center


Set of 5 coloured flags: nylon and heavyweight cotton with metal grommets.

149.9 x 242.6 cm. (59 x 95.5 in).

This work is from an edition of two.

£50,000 - 70,000 

KYOBAI, Japanese Art and Culture

3 Apr 2008, 6pm