The third annual Complex Con was held at the Long Beach Convention Center on Nov 3-4. It brings together pop culture, music, art and street fashion. Cultural Director/Executive Chair Pharrell Williams and legendary artist Takashi Murakami joined force to create a place where artists, designers and curators to celebrate and shape our street culture.
Here we found some Sorayama items at XLARGE.
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A triple collaboration with MEDICOM TOY. Shiny metal-body BE@rRBRICK, resembling Sorayama’s “Sexy Robot”.
Sorayama’s “Robot Gorilla” bust figure
Hajime Sorayama at XLARGE booth
Takashi Murakami’s renowned KaiKai Kiki art production company curated a space within the Art Zone.
Project Inochi, a series of artworks from other mediums, including film, that aim to elaborate on the mythology and surrounding universe of the title character.
Inochi was completed after several years of spirited interaction between Murakami and his collaborators, including the uniquely gifted robot designer Eisaku Kito whose work can also be seen in the movie Innocence, the model company Lucky Wide who provided the mold and are long-time collaborators on Murakami’s sculptures, and Cinq Art who applied the paint. The latter two companies assigned the project to their ace staff, with the molding at Lucky Wide being carried out by Hiroki Iijima and painting at Cinq Art overseen by Koji Miki.
Murakami Started his figure project in 90’s. Second Mission Project Ko2 Advanced and My Lonesome Cowboy are among them. The blatant sexuality exuded by these figures is associated with the popular youth culture in Japan, such as sci-fi and fantasy worlds of anime (animation), manga (comic books), and video games. Murakami blurs the line between “high” and “low” art, traditional and popular culture. His works draw on everything from anime and manga to Buddhist forms and iconography to Abstract Expressionism and Pop art.
Takashi Murakami’s Devil Ko2 Figures
Article and photos by David Namba
The DNA of Tokusatsu Ultraman Genealogy exhibition on Ultraman, the reigning king of Japan heroes and the history of Tsuburaya Productions safely lands with COVID-19 prevention measures at Gallery AaMo in Tokyo Dome City. From the first program in 1966 to today, no Tsuburaya hero or program is left out at this game multimedia exhibition that additionally highlights Reiwa era hitters like Ultraman Z, now running Saturday mornings on TV Tokyo and the Ultraman Tsuburaya YouTube channel.
Somewhere between science and myth, the unknowable and probing curiosity, giant monsters lingers in our minds. Colossal and crawling, Varan haunted the forests of rural Japan in the 1958 film Daikaiju Varan (aka Varan the Unbelievable). Varan, with a craggly carapace (modeled after peanut shells) adorned by semi-translucent thorns, and the countenance of a demon was crafted by one Keizo Murase. Born in 1933, Murase has had an illustrious career crafting the various giant monsters of the Showa era, including Mothra, Gamera, Godzilla, and more.