Saturday, August 10, 2013

Yoshitomo Nara Exhibits

Photo Credit: haley green

Years ago, a small postcard collection at Borders Books grabbed my attention. The title alone "OH! MY GOD! I MISS YOU!"  would have enticed me to buy it, but then I thumbed through the cards, and was won over by the illustrations. They were a collection of at once whimsical and slightly devious characters. They were smile-inducing. I quickly had a new favorite artist.

Over the years, I have run into the errant Yoshitomo Nara piece. Once, while working in Japan, I was in a store that was selling custom-framed Yoshitomo Nara prints. I absolutely had to have one, but I was on vacation, and they were not shipping them, nor selling them online. Alas.

I was cleaning yesterday and found my old postcard book. I had forgotten that he had sculptures in various places (as pictured in his book). Today's destination is seeking out his amazing pieces of art.

We will start with the Aomori Museum of Art. "They commissioned both 'Octagonal Chamber' and 'Aomori Dog' by Yoshimoto. They have many additional works; it is a permanent collection. As he is an Aomori native who went on to become a world-class artist, it makes sense that they would have such a collection." (Justin Velgus, 10-8-12, The Aomori Museum of Art,

Next, let's see the Museum of Modern Ceramic Arts in Gifu, Japan. Unfotunately, we have already lost a bit of time on this one, since they started on May 25. Do not despair. Yoshitomo's sculpture 'White Riot' is still visible until August 25, as part of the special exhibition 'The Magic of Ceramics – Artistic Inspiration.' (The Magic of Ceramics – Artistic Inspiration, n.d.

Stops outside Yoshitomo's home country include the John and Mary Pappajohn Sculpture Park in Des Moines, Iowa (home to the sculpture 'White Ghost'), the  Palm Springs Art Museum–where 'Your Dog' resides. Both are permanent collections.  If you would like to catch other international collections stored permanently, "MoMA, New York; CAC Malaga, Spain; and Queensland Art Gallery, Australia are all options. (Yoshitomo's "White Ghost" Coming to Park Avenue," 8-9-10,

I never need an excuse to travel, but if I did, I just got a new reason to go to the above places.

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