Takashi Murakami (b. 1962, Tokyo, Japan) is the founder of the Superflat movement whose commercialism-influenced, comical style has become a recognizable visual language across the world. Murakami studied at Tokyo University of the Arts.
Murakami studied Nihonga, the traditional style of Japanese painting, which serves as a starting point for his flat, cartoon-inspired motifs and style. He blends together the distinctions between “high” and “low” art, ancient and contemporary, and East and West, describing an artist as being someone who recognizes the borders between worlds and makes an effort to understand them. Despite the apparent playfulness of the cute imagery and the bright neon colors of his paintings, sculptures, and commercial designs, his works carry cultural critiques and raise questions concerning topics such as cultural appropriation, the contemporary art market, and consumerism.
Murakami has collaborated with many brands and musical artists including Louis Vuitton, Issey Miyake, Billie Eilish, Kanye West, and Pharrell Williams. He has held solo exhibitions at numerous institutions including the Fondation Cartier pour l’art contemporain, the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles, Brooklyn Museum, Museum fur Moderne Kunst in Frankfurt, the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, the Palace of Versailles in France, Qatar Museum Gallery Alriwag in Qatar, Mori Art Museum in Tokyo, Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, Garage Museum of Contemporary Art in Moscow, Museum of Fine Arts Boston, Albright-Knox Gallery in Buffalo, Vancouver Art Gallery, Modern Art Museum Fort Worth, Astrup Fearnley Museet in Oslo, Tai Kwun Contemporary in Hong Kong, Instituto Tomie Ohtake in Sao Paulo.
Takashi Murakami transformed the CT/PET Scan Suite at Children’s National Hospital with his iconic flower imagery in 2020. The artist’s work is also featured in RxART Coloring Book Between the Lines, Vol. 2.
Artwork © Takashi Murakami/KaiKai Kiki Co. Ltd. All rights reserved.