25.8 x 2.7 x 29.5 cm
This landmark publication accompanies a major retrospective exhibition of Takashi Murakami’s paintings. Although other volumes on Murakami in English address the crossover between his fine art and commercial output, this book presents the first serious consideration of his work as a painter. It provides a sustained consideration of the artist’s relationship to the tradition of Japanese painting and his facility in straddling high and low, ancient and modern, eastern and western, commercial and high art. Lavishly illustrated with large-scale images of works that span his art student days to now—many reproduced together for the first time—the book contextualizes Murakami’s output in postwar Japan with essays that situate the artist in relation to folklore, traditional Japanese painting Nihonga, the Tokyo art scene in the 1980s and 1990s, and the threat of nuclear annihilation. The volume includes essays by curator Michael Darling, Michael Dylan Foster, Chelsea Foxwell, Reuben Keehan, and Akira Mizuta Lippit, as well as a biography and exhibition history, selected bibliography, and index.
Murakami was born in Tokyo, and studied at Tokyo University of the Arts, Japan, earning a BFA in 1986, an MFA in 1988, and a PhD in 1993. He founded Hiropon factory in Tokyo in 1996, now Kaikai Kiki, an art production and art management corporation, which markets his art and fosters emerging artists. Best known for his commercial ventures, forays into comics and animation, and post-apocalyptic characters, he has also diligently contended with Nihonga. Murakami’s paintings are in private collections and foundations as well as major public collections including the MCA’s own holdings.
Takashi Murakami: The Octopus Eats Its Own Leg is organized by the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago and curated by Michael Darling, James W. Alsdorf Chief Curator. The exhibition travels to the Vancouver Art Gallery and the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth. 286 pages with 250 full-color reproductions, published by Skira Rizzoli Publications, Inc. in association with the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago and Kaikai Kiki New York, LLC.