Perhaps more TBA.
Giant Robot presents: Mari Inukai – who will be a resident at the Giant Robot booth. It doesn’t mean she’ll be there 24-7, but she will spend the majority of her time at SDCC hawking goods, making smiles, and drawing. We’ll have the Hone Marilla GID! $100 and it comes with a small original drawing. It’s displays beautifully. Also, DAILY mini-print releases. We’re working out the editions and details. Stay tuned!
In a small crowded area in downtown LA, Takashi Murakami said, “It’s like when I first saw Giant Robot magazine in New York.” It’s been years since I’ve spoken with Murakami who in between our last meetings, has gone from superstar to megastar, from world wide artist and now filmmaker. I’m not sure which is greater, but he’s the bigger one.
Takashi Murakami was the subject of a Q and A at the Orpheum Theater in Los Angeles. The brightly lit marquee spelled out his name as if he were a movie or a band. A line of many recognizable art fans formed outside an hour early. Over 1400 tickets were sold to see him speak with Pico Iyer, an author of ten books who has lived in Japan for decades. It’s part of the Broad series of talks which features interviews with artists and is a powerful set up for their own up-and-coming museum in downtown LA across from MOCA.
Pre-talk, I got to go to the upstairs vip area. Mark Ryden, Eli Broad, Murakami, Tim Blum and a crew of artists I’ve had the pleasure to work with, hang out.
Takashi appeared with his mini convoy. Translator, photographer, and perhaps assistant. It was nice to catch up with Takashi, and it went into a blur. It was a conversation about our lives. It was nice to see him continue his hustle and still be chill. He’s obviously hit that mark where he can be an otaku and a goofy guy wearing a plush pink hat. He can say what he feels, do what he wants, and still be part of art history. He’s wise enough to know that he doesn’t have to care so much. Do people need to love him, do people still think he’s a heel, does it matter? No. I don’t think so.
Joanne Heyler Curator of the Broad
Hug photos-don’t like them, but this one works, maybe because it’s blurry.
These days, he makes giant art pieces including one that’s 100 meters long. His studio is still gigantic, he still has tons of minions, and he’s still hard working. He’s splitting art time with cinema, which is obvious after seeing his short pieces like the Inochi interstitials and his Louis Vuitton animation. The talk spanned his personal history, his work with the art establishment in Japan, Fukushima and his own giving back to art. It barely scraped the surface on topics that can be extrapolated into hour long conversations. He mentions that his helpers basically say “fuck you” when a project is done and they’re disgruntled and leaving his “factory”. He mentions that his job is to say “no” and not be satisfied which is basically buying him time to perhaps say “yes” after everything is done and each possible avenue is explored. It’s that drive that makes him Murakami. Most won’t understand, and that’s for the better.
Talks like this often go too fast, and the fella who held up the 5 minutes and then 0 minutes signs was largely ignored. He held those signs for a while and then the show was complete. It lasted about an hour and could have gone two. Some questions from the audience came in and were largely useless, except for the one question about advice to a young artist. He mentioned how it’s easier to get into art these days, much like a band in the 90s, but your career might be quite short, so “be careful”.
After the talk, some wanted the hipster burger next door where handle-bar mustaches and pipes were being handed out. Mark Ryden wanted to go anywhere and that was closeby. We thought about it, then realized, it’s hipster burgers, it’s packed, and I know it’s not for me. I suggested that home would be better. We opted for a old and nearly forgotten place in Little Tokyo, where it would be easy to get a seat in a vinyl booth. They’ll make earnest food that’s been tested for decades. What’s wrong with places like this? Are hipster burgers really better? Are we fooled by the mixes of simple spices? They’re quickly disappearing and I’ll miss them all.
It turns out, when our food arrives, Murakami comes in with his staff. He looks at our food: simple ramen, gyoza, and fried rice, and says that’s what he’s about to eat. He sits with us for a photo and laughs. We shoot some and he shoots one and posts it quick. Some rumble quietly at the coincidence that he’d show up at the same place. I thought, “Is it?”
Andrew Hem, Rob Sato, Sean Chao, Nathan Ota, Takashi Murakami, Edwin Ushiro, Mari Inukai
Mari Inukai’s exhibition, Jungle Gym of My Mind opened last night at Thinkspace Gallery in Culver City. I’ve known Mari for years and I’m qualified to say that the subjects of her art progresses with her life. There are dark and light moments and a consistent subject is her daughter Sena. Seeing an image of Mari clothed and sitting in a bathtub is striking. When does one sit in a bathtub clothed? The spectacle piece and perhaps the largest is a portrait of Sena in Japanese traditional attire. She’s posed in the center and is a huge piece of Mari’s life. At times, their relationship seems like they are the best of friends and sometimes, Sena jumps into the mother role. The drawings are simple and refined. The graphite line work tell stories. Female nudes? Yes, she paints them classy. Here are more photos.
Mari Inukai’s exhibition, Jungle Gym of My Mind begins tomorrow. I first enjoyed her drawings and have since enjoyed her larger scale paintings. They often capture the essence of their subjects who are often in classical painting poses. Inukai is also able to weave in elements of popular culture in a menagerie of her own iconic characters in other paintings. As a whole, the pieces link together and they tell a story about her life.
GR X Comic-Con 13: Nekomitaina Hone GID – Mari Inukai Signing
In the wonderful series of Sekaiseifukudan, it’s time to release another limited edition Glow in the Dark, and this time it’s the Nekomitaina Hone GID! A purchase will get you a free limited edition print.
Mari Inukai will be Signing and sketching on Saturday July 20th 11am!
Giant Robot Booth 1729
GR X Comic-Con 13: Remix Big Boss Robot
The 5.5″ sized Big Boss Robot will be Remixed.
Drilone, Leecifer, Luke Chueh, David Horvath, Aaron Brown, Julie West, Jason Limon, Edwin Ushiro, Jeremiah Ketner, Nathan Ota, Yoskay Yamamoto, J*Ryu, Mari Inukai, Dehara Yukinori, Cris Rose, Kohei Yamashita, Lunabee, A Little Stranger + more
Art by Nathan Ota
Participants subject to change
Giant Robot Booth 1729
An awesome opening night featuring the works of Mari Inukai, Sena Inukai, Amy Sol, Audrey Kawasaki, Edwin Ushiro, Elizabeth Ito, Fumi Omori, Katsuya Terada, Kent Williams, Sean Chao, Stella Im Hultberg, Tessar Lo, and Yoskay Yamamoto. Thanks for coming out. The below photo features Kaonashi from Hayao Miyazaki’s Spirited Away. That’s Audrey Kawasaki on left, Mari and Sena Inukai on right.
A few images to get you warmed up for GR2 on saturday.
Great work by our close friend, Mari Inukai.
Stella Im Hultburg
Giant Robot Presents
20 pieces of Dreams
An Exhibition by Mari Inukai and Special Guests
In Japan, a 20th Birthday is a “Coming of Age” birthday. It includes ceremonies and parties, and it’s akin to becoming 21 in the US. We’ll be celebrating Mari Inukai’s Daughter, Sena’s birthday on October 27th at Giant Robot 2 in West LA.
The Exhibition will feature:
Mari Inukai, Sena Inukai, Amy Sol, Audrey Kawasaki, Edwin Ushiro, Elizabeth Ito, Fumi Omori, Katsuya Terada, Kent Williams, Sean Chao, Stella Im Hultberg, Tessar Lo, and Yoskay Yamamoto
An opening reception for Mari Inukai, Sena and Friends will take place from 6:30 – 10:00 PM on Saturday, October 27th.
October 27th – November 14th 2012
Reception: Saturday, October 27th, 6:30 – 10:00 PM
2062 Sawtelle Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90025
For more information about Mari Inukai GR2, or anything else:
Giant Robot Owner/Publisher
(310) 445 9276
Mari Inukai oil painted these figures. They feel like they’re one of her paintings!
Signing Sunday 1-3pm at Giant Robot booth 1729. Mari Inukai and the exclusive GID Nekomitaina. It’s $100 and you get an 8×10 print free with purchase or while supplies last.
Post It’s 7 is coming up this thursday. Here’s the work by Mari Inukai. Her works are always beautiful, delicate, and at the same time with attitude.
Minutes after we posted that the Bliss Kent Williams cover was out, he appeared. Literally minutes.
Bliss a free paper features Kent Williams on the cover including an interview. Not enough people pay attention to Kent, but here he is. That’s him floating upside down. That’s Mari Inukai below on the bed.
That’s Ayako Fujitani below
Mari on the left and Sena Inukai on right. This painting looks gangster. Mari with a sword… dangerous.
Mari Inukai is a friend to Giant Robot much like many other artists. Her work is often depicting her daughter Sena, but not always. Inukai explores popular culture with her own range of characters, which manifested into her own character figure series, Sekaiseifukudan as seen at Giant Robot Store. They’re not toys, but more in line as an artist work. The video below was taken at Comic-Con when Inukai signed figures and charmed new and old fans.
Her next exhibition, In the Wake of Dreams is below and begins tomorrow. It’s a four person show and should promise beautiful art works. Inukai’s daughter, Sena is pictured below, second from the left.