Published by Walther König, Köln. Edited by Momoko Fukurama, Shinji Nanzuka. Text by Nils Olsen, Fredi Fischli, Yuji Yamashita.
Keiichi Tanaami (born 1936) was a protagonist of Japan’s postwar avant-garde, and one of the first Japanese artists to successfully blend art and commerce. Tanaami’s artwork was appearing in advertisements and magazines as early as 1962, when American Pop art was still in the ascendant. A trip to New York in 1968 provided a transformative encounter with Andy Warhol, which encouraged Tanaami to pursue several paths at once, and he was soon producing poster designs, happenings, prints and album covers, developing an assured, erotic psychedelic style populated with butterfly women, chimneys and breasts (a meeting with Robert Crumb and an appreciation of American underground comics was also significant). Including collage, painting, silkscreen prints and animation, this volume constitutes a catalogue raisonné of Tanaami’s early work of the 60s and 70s. It includes his illustrations for the magazine Shosetsu-gendai, drawings and collages for Art Journal, album covers for the Monkees and Jefferson Airplane, stills from an animation series made for the film festival at Sogetsu Art Center, anti-Vietnam War silkscreen prints and painting series of Hollywood actresses.
Published by Walther König, Köln. Text by Stefano Stoll.
Keiichi Tanaami (born 1936) is one of the most influential artists of Japan’s postwar avant-garde. Among the country’s first video artists, and a member of the Japanese Neo-Dada movement, Tanaami visited New York in the late 1960s and came face to face with the paintings of Andy Warhol. Having worked as a graphic designer, Tanaami was entranced by Warhol’s amalgam of graphic and fine arts, and began to make drawings and collages that blended psychedelic kitsch with traditional Japanese arts, in a style that quickly led to album covers for the Monkees and Jefferson Airplane. This volume collects Tanaami’s erotic, surreal and cartoonish drawings and collages from these years, when the artist was most steeped in American pop culture, just before he became art director for the Japanese Playboy. The dust jacket folds out into a large black-and-white poster.