YOSHITOMO NARA (B. 1959)
YOSHITOMO NARA (B. 1959)
YOSHITOMO NARA (B. 1959)
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YOSHITOMO NARA (B. 1959)
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Where Christie’s has provided a Minimum Price Guar… Read more
YOSHITOMO NARA (B. 1959)

Missing Mariana, Suni, Christina; Mariana; Suni; & Christina

Details
YOSHITOMO NARA (B. 1959)
Missing Mariana, Suni, Christina; Mariana; Suni; & Christina
Missing Mariana, Suni, Christina
acrylic on paper
51.5 x 36 cm. (20 1⁄4 x 14 1⁄8 in.)
Painted in 2005

Mariana
signed with artist’s signature, titled and dated '2005 MARIANA' (on the reverse)
acrylic and coloured pencil on cardboard
69.7 x 37.5 cm. (27 1⁄2 x 14 3⁄4 in.)
Painted in 2005

Suni
signed with artist’s signature, titled and dated '2005 SUNI’ (on the reverse)
acrylic and coloured pencil on paper
51.5 x 36 cm. (20 1⁄4 x 14 1⁄8 in.)
Painted in 2005

Christina
signed with artist’s signature, titled and dated '2005 Christina’ (on the reverse)
acrylic and coloured pencil on paper
51.5 x 36 cm. (20 1⁄4 x 14 1⁄8 in.)
Painted in 2005
Provenance
Marianne Boesky Gallery, New York
Private Collection
Sotheby's Hong Kong, 6 April 2014, lot 896
Acquired at the above sale by the present owner
Literature
Bijutsu Shuppan Sha, Yoshitomo Nara: The Complete Works Volume 2 – Works on Paper, Tokyo, 2011 (illustrated, plate D-2005-007 – D-2005-010, p. 227).
Special notice

Where Christie’s has provided a Minimum Price Guarantee it is at risk of making a loss, which can be significant, if the lot fails to sell. Christie’s therefore sometimes chooses to share that risk with a third party who agrees prior to the auction to place an irrevocable written bid on the lot. If there are no other higher bids, the third party commits to buy the lot at the level of their irrevocable written bid. In doing so, the third party takes on all or part of the risk of the lot not being sold. Lots which are subject to a third party guarantee arrangement are identified in the catalogue.

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Ada Tsui (徐文君)
Ada Tsui (徐文君) Specialist, Head of Day Sale

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Lot Essay

Missing Mariana Suni Christina offers three central portraits of Yoshitomo Nara’s most beloved subject. Uncommon to his other paperworks, the girls’ entrancing eyes glisten with a level of tonally-rich detail. Intricate texture and delicate brushstrokes add to tenderness of the image — resulting in exquisite portraits that are akin to his canvas paintings.

Paper is perhaps the most intimate medium for the artist. It was expensive and scarce for Nara who grew up in postwar milieu, so his early artistic creation relied on reusing the materials. The medium became an indispensable fuel for his creativity, precious and deeply personal, enabling Nara to channel his childhood experiences into his art.

The artist leaves his work for multiple interpretations and these paintings exemplify the alluring ambiguity that Nara presents to viewers. This set offers a refreshing narrative to his ainfancy to Christina’s adolescence. “Missing” can mean lost or nostalgia which allows audiences to infer the work from two angles. While some would construe the piece as a poster for the missing girls, the ambiguity leaves a perhaps less somber interpretation that plays on the double entendre in “missing”. The girls are recollection, snapshots, of the wonderment, sincerity and excitement from different stages of childhood. Nara evokes nostalgic memories and childlike sense of life that we as adults had neglected but were nevertheless preserved in the recesses of our minds. Missing Mariana Suni Christina encourages us to reflect on the times when we were eager to grow up and asks have we mistaken the childish for the childlike?
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