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21st Century Rimpa Posters : Competitive Works by 10 Graphic Designers

  • For this exhibition, in commemoration of the 400th anniversary of the Rimpa school, ten of Japan's most prominent designers were requested to produce posters inspired by the Rimpa style. The result was an array of unique and widely varied "21st Century Rimpa" works each expressing the interpretative perspective of their designer: works depicting plants and animals, works whose motifs were gleaned from the art of folding fans, works intently focused on use of curved lines, works employing gold leaf, works using images suggestive of traditional paintings of the wind and thunder gods. Each designer created four outsize posters that were juxtaposed to look like a four-panel folding screen. For this occasion the gallery was also outfitted with furnishings allowing visitors to sit and admire the works on display in an bright, open atmosphere enhanced by the large glass surfaces. The result was a resplendent and peaceful display space befitting Kyoto, where Rimpa was born.

  • ID


  • Exhibition Name

    21st Century Rimpa Posters : Competitive Works by 10 Graphic Designers

  • Period

    April 04, 2016–May 13, 2016

  • Exhibition Type

    Traveling exhibition from ggg to ddd

  • Venue

    ddd Uzumasa, Kyoto

  • Poster Designers

  • Supervision

  • Layout Design

  • April 07, 2016
    Lecture 1
    kyoto ddd gallery

    This Gallery Talk featured Motoaki Kono, an educator greatly in demand at the numerous events that took place in Kyoto in 2015 in celebration of the 400th anniversary of the Rimpa school of painting. In his opening comments, Mr. Kono expressed his view that the works on display at this show by 10 contemporary graphic designers were outstanding examples all inspired by Rimpa. He then gave a general overview explaining how the school has passed in a continuum from this early beginnings down to the present starting with the pioneering exponents Tawaraya Sotatsu and Honami Koetsu; continuing Ogata Korin and Ogata Kenzan; succeeded in Edo by Sakai Hoitsu and Suzuki Kiitsu; onward to the fourth generation, and carried on by contemporary Rimpa artists. Unlike the Kano school, aficionados of Rimpa painting learned their art auto-didactically. Because under this learning system artists incorporated the essence of the school's traits rather than seeking to copy what had come before, Mr. Kono said that Rimpa defies one definitive definition.

  • April 23, 2016
    Lecture 2
    kyoto ddd gallery

    The two speakers, both graduates of Tokyo University of the Arts with 31 years separating them, have a rare relationship of mutual admiration. The conversation kicked off with Mr. Nakajo reminiscing about his time spent in Kansai including Kyoto, many years ago. Both he and Mr. Hattori typically don't focus in particular on Japanese things in the course of their work, but they talked about how they approached creating their works for this exhibition. Mr. Hattori who was in charge of the display layout stated that the exhibits at ddd, worked up into a folding screen theme and coupled with the venue's glass windows, had gone well in creating a sense of openness. Next, the two speakers revelated what aspects they each hold firmly in mind when creating a design, followed by a humorous description by Mr. Nakajo of the difficulties he was encountering in making preparations for his upcoming solo exhibition at ggg. The Gallery Talk closed with a series of questions asked by young members of the audience, to which Mr. Hattori and Mr. Nakajo offered responses of great clarity.


Photographer: YOSHIDA Akihito

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