signed and dated ‘TAKASHI ‘98’; stamped 'TAKASHI FIRST IN QUALITY AROUND THE WORLD' and 'TAKASHI CO. MADE IN JAPAN' (on the reverse)
acrylic on canvas laid on board
65 x 50 cm. (25 5/8 x 19 ¾ in.)
Executed in 1998
Tomio Koyama Gallery, Tokyo, Japan
Marianne Boesky Gallery, New York, US
Curt Marcus Gallery, New York, US
Private Collection
Anon. sale, Phillips London, 28 June 2011, lot 122
Acquired at the above sale by the present owner

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Sylvia Cheung
Sylvia Cheung

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Lot Essay

“When I first coined the term "superflat" it was not a positive characterization of Japanese culture but a criticism. After the war the hierarchy of society was flattened, everything became flat. In a sense democracy was achieved. But it was such a rigid flatness that if you ever rose above it you would be hit down like a nail hammered into the ground, and if you fell below they would try to scoop you back up. It was a very strange, unnatural flatness. So on the one side there was the social flatness, but then there was also the flatness of manga and anime, the story's flatness, the way images are created and the flatness of traditional paintings.” – Takashi Murakami

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