Tadanori Yokoo Essay

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Beginning in the 1960’s, we see an influx of new graphic styles, art directed at integrating ‘pop’ culture or mass media. In the U.S. or Europe, it may be common for an artist to use this medium for their own expression, or perhaps if a graphic artist is hired to complete work for an advertisement, product, or an event; however, hardly do these two mentalities intertwine. Tadanori Yokoo has found that this is not the case for him. His vibrant expression of concepts, colors, and motifs have gathered appreciation by a wide array of commissioners. Yokoo’s interpretation of contemporary Japanese Popular culture through flat bright illustrative design, create a psychedelic and imaginative work not yet seen at this time in Japan.
One of Tadanori Yokoo’s first artwork from 1965 that defined his art style, was the poster entitled “Made in Japan, Tadanori Yokoo, Having Reached a Climax at the Age of 29, I was Dead.” In this poster, the viewer can only assume that Yokoo has hung himself, front and center, from an archway, embolden with his name. Which could be in reference to blaming himself for his own demise. Spreading out from the bottom of the work are rays of the sun, alternating from a red hue to a blue, a motif he carries on throughout other areas of the poster. The bottom left corner sits a black and white picture of a baby Yokoo, plastered
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He introduces a variety of image-making techniques that have had influences on him. His work displays an amazing use of visual stimulation, indicating a massive array of eclectic artistic movements in his work, such as American Pop Art, Dada, Surrealism, Russian Constructivism, contemporary Japanese popular culture and traditional Japanese art forms, especially the woodblock prints known as ukiyo-e. However, his use of blending traditional practices with new ones is what makes his work like no
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