Yoshitomo Nara - 20th Century & Contemporary Art & Design Day Sale Hong Kong Tuesday, June 21, 2022 | Phillips

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  • Macrocephalic children often find themselves the protagonists of Nara’s work. However, eschewing the jovial air of playfulness one would typically associate with the faux-naïf aesthetic, Nara instead imbues his creations with cynicism. The subject of the current work embodies this— her eyes are set in a squinted glare, her mouth is gnarled in a rude sneer, and a long, stitched scar mauls her features. The child looks simultaneously intimidating and tragic, an appearance unbefitting of a cherubic toddler wearing what seems to be adorable puppy ears, which brings to mind another one of the artist’s iconic characters— the droopy-eared, sleepy-eyed dog. Reflecting his lonely childhood, Nara’s child protagonists exist as defiant yet vulnerable forces in a universe that simmers with sinister undercurrents.

    Yoshitomo Nara, Aomori-ken, 2005
    Collection of the Aomori Museum of Art, Japan


    • Provenance

      Tomio Koyama Gallery, Tokyo
      Private Collection
      Christie’s, New York, 21 September 2011, lot 45
      Private Collection
      SBI Art Auction, Tokyo, 20 June 2020, lot 296
      Acquired at the above sale by the present owner

Property from an Important Private Collection


Sad Dog

acrylic and pencil on paper
84 x 59.1 cm. (33 1/8 x 23 1/4 in.)
Executed in 1998, this work is registered in the Yoshitomo Nara Online Catalogue Raisonné under registration number YNF2365 and is accompanied by a certificate of authenticity issued by Rabbit Hills.

Full Cataloguing

HK$1,500,000 - 2,500,000 

Contact Specialist

Danielle So
Specialist, Head of Day Sale
+852 2318 2027

20th Century & Contemporary Art & Design Day Sale

Hong Kong Auction 21 June 2022