WEB POSTER EXHIBITION - Japanese posters - today

This web exhibition accompanies a traveling exhibition Japanese posters - today, that was previously shown at the Neue Sammlung in Munich, and is now at the Museum fuer Gestaltung in Zuerich, before continuing to Frankfurt/M, Prague, Warsaw and Berlin. The following text and pictures were kindly provided as press kit by Sabine Trieloff, head of communication at the Museum fuer Gestaltung.

Taku SATOH, Analysis of the Massproduct Design - Takara "Licca", 2002
© Taku SATOH
Inkjet Print, 103 x 72.8 cm
Exhibition poster

Kashiwa SATO, Tai Shitsu Sui, 2004
© Kashiwa SATO
Silkscreening, 103 x 145.6 cm
Client: Kirin Beverage
Advertising poster for the soft drink Tai Shitsu Sui

Kenjiro SANO, Kegawazoku: DVD - Uplink, 2005
© Kenjiro SANO
Offset, 103 x 72.8 cm
Client: Uplink
Poster announcing the realease of Kegawazoku's 5th anniversary DVD

  Japanese Posters - today
An exhibition from the DNP Archives of Graphic Design

August 30 until December 3, 2006, Galerie,
Museum fuer Gestaltung Zuerich
Ausstellungsstrasse 60, CH-8005 Zuerich, Switzerland
Telefon +41 (0)43 446 67 67
Fax +41 (0)43 446 45 67

Opening Tuesday, August 29, 2006, 7pm, Vortragssaal

Project leader Cynthia Gavranic, Museum für Gestaltung Zuerich

Poster selection Hiroshi Kashiwagi, Design critic, professor at the Musashino Art University (MAU), Tokyo

Japanese posters have an unmistakable aesthetic charisma: the breadth of design encompasses elements of drawing and calligraphy, manga motives, computer generated effects photo montages and pop-art-collages. The use of light, colour and surface texture contributes to this singular aesthetic. The sophisticated printing techniques of the posters increase their graphic expressiveness.

Tradition and Innovation
The exhibition juxtaposes internationally renowned designers who redefined Japanese graphic design in the 1960s to those of the young generation, creating a dynamic tension between tradition and innovation. But Western influences, originating from Constructivism, Bauhaus or Concrete Art can also be discovered in the style that is mainly characteristic of the older generation. Among the Old Masters are personalities such as Kazumasa NAGAI (designer of the exhibition poster), Ikko TANAKA, Mitsuo KATSUI or Tadanori YOKOO. The younger generation, shaped by digital media, is represented by Nagi NODA, Keiko HIRANO, Taku SATOH, Kashiwa SATO, Kenjiro SANO and others.

A selection of over 100 posters of the last 15 years
The exhibition at the Museum fuer Gestaltung Zuerich concentrates on the poster design of the last 15 years, a period of rapid change in an age of globalised communication and the increasing importance of the digital media. The evolving form of the poster appears in all its complexity, revealing elements of continuity as well as change. More than half the posters on show were made for cultural institutions, while others were produced as part of peace-movement activities or for commercial purposes.

International co-operation with the DNP Archives of Graphic Design
The exhibition project "Japanese Posters - today" is an international cooperation between the lender - the DNP Archives of Graphic Design in Tokyo - and various European museums. Apart from the Museum fuer Gestaltung Zuerich, the main partners for this project are Die Neue Sammlung in Munich, which is also responsible for the publication, and the Umeleckoprumyslove museum (UPM) of Prague. After Munich the Museum fuer Gestaltung Zuerich is the second stage of the European tour. The exhibition then travels on to the Museum fuer angewandte Kunst in Frankfurt am Main, the UPM in Prag, to the Kunstbibliothek der Staatlichen Museen zu Berlin and to the Plakatmuseum in Warsaw.

The exhibition layout and the poster as medium
Posters are usually conceived for public space and are often seen from quite a distance. The organization of the exhibition acknowledges this fact. Most of the posters are framed and glass-covered and hang in trianglular groupings throughout the space. This organisation opens up various possible points of view on the works and through them; combined withthe fact that the floor remains empty, this means visitors are able to experience the gallery space as a whole.

List of designers in the exhibition

Old generation:
Yusaku KAMEKURA (1915-1997), Ikko TANAKA (1930-2002), Kazumasa NAGAI (*1929), Shigeo FUKUDA (*1932), Mitsuo KATSUI (*1931), Tadanori YOKOO (*1936), Masuteru AOBA (*1939), Keisuke NAGATOMO (*1939), Katsumi ASABA (*1940), Shin MATSUNAGA (*1940), Masayoshi NAKAJO (*1933)

Young generation:
Kazunari HATTORI (*1964), Nagi NODA (*1973), Kenjiro SANO (*1972), Kazufumi NAGAI (*1961), Taku SATOH (*1959), Keiko HIRANO (*1959), Katsunori AOKI (*1965), Kei MATSUSHITA (*1961), Norito SHINMURA (*1960), Yasuhiro SAWADA (*1961), Kan AKITA (*1958), Ken MIKI (*1955), Kenya HARA (*1958), Kashiwa SATO (*1965)

The exhibition was made possible with the particular support of Dai Nippon Printing Co. Ltd., Tokyo

The exhibition is under the patronage of the Japanese embassy in Switzerland

Tadanori YOKOO, Japanese Culture The Fifty Postwar Years, 1995
© Tadanori YOKOO
Offset, 103 x 72.8 cm
Client: Asahi Shimbun, Meguro Museum of Art
Exhibition poster

Ikko TANAKA, Nihon Buyo, 1981
Offset, 103 x 72.8 cm
Client: UCLA Asian Performing Arts Institute (University of California, Los Angeles)
Poster for a Japanese traditional dance performance at UCLA

Kazumasa NAGAI, Life, 1999
© Kazumasa NAGAI
Silkscreening, 103 x 145.6 cm
Client: Creation Gallery G8
From "Life" poster series for the Creation Gallery G8

home  previous exhibitions  page created on August 27, 2006 / this section is part of Rene Wanner's Poster Page /