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"My Reality: Contemporary Art and the Culture of Japanese Animation"
2002-04-21 until 2002-06-23
Tampa Museum of Art
Tampa, FL, USA United States of America

Japanese animation (anime), which has attained almost cult status among young people globally during the past several decades, is increasingly breaking into mainstream. This exhibition investigates the effect that this form of pop culture has had on todayís art in Japan and other Asian countries and in the West. Presenting works by artists from these different regions, the exhibition explores how Western and Eastern artists have influenced one another through their shared interest in the culture of anime.

While anime has its origins in American animation, it is equally connected to Japanese art history, particularly the technique of wood-block printing. The exhibition features sci-fi concepts including futuristic technology, cyborgs and other humanoid robotics, aliens and fantastical creatures, and post-apocalyptic landscapes. It also plumbs social and economic themes such as gender roles, consumerism, and pop culture. Much anime has a futuristic flavor because it affirms technology as a positive force in contemporary society. Anime initially became popular through comic books and film, later expanding to include phenomena such as Pokemon and similar animated series.

The works on view range from Paul McCarthyís cartoon characters to Micha Kleinís glossy images inspired by club culture; and from Takashi Murakamiís sculpture, which uses anime directly, to Momoyo Torimitsuís enormous balloon rabbits, which satirize animeís exaggeratedly cute images.

My Reality: Contemporary Art and the Culture of Japanese Animation originated at the Des Moines Art Center, curated by Jeff Fleming, senior curator, and Susan Lubowsky Talbott, director. The traveling exhibition is organized and circulated by Independent Curators International (ICI), New York. The exhibition at the Des Moines Art Center was made possible by support from the Jacqueline and Myron Blank Exhibition Fund of the Des Moines Art Center, The Bright Foundation, the Lila Wallace Readerís Digest Fund, and the Greater Des Moines Community Foundation. Additional funding for the traveling exhibition was provided by the Mondriaan Foundation, Amsterdam and the Consulate General of the Netherlands in New York.

IMAGE:
Momoyuo Torimitsu
Somehow I Don't Feel Comfortable, 2000
Rubber
The Dikeou Collection, NY
Courtesy of Galarie Xippas, Paris, France.


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