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  • Some works on display in Japan for the first time and some out of the gate! Andy Warhol retrospective only in Kyoto - Andy Warhol Kyocera Museum of Art, Kyoto, Japan

Some works on display in Japan for the first time and some out of the gate! Andy Warhol retrospective only in Kyoto - Andy Warhol Kyocera Museum of Art, Kyoto, Japan

  • Area

    • Kansai
    • Kyoto
  • Categories

    • Recommendations
  • Update date

    • 2022-12-02

Andy Warhol visited Kyoto twice in his life and is said to have been inspired by Japanese culture, such as ikebana and gold leaf, in creating his works. The current exhibition, Andy Warhol Kyoto, is a must-see, featuring the never-before-seen 'Three Marilyns', the large scale 'The Last Supper' and other works related to Kyoto. José Carlos Díaz of the Andy Warhol Museum, who curated the exhibition, says: "The special thing about this exhibition is that it introduces both the 'Warhol' that everyone knows and the unknown side of the artist."

 Let's take a look at representative works along the five exhibition configurations.

From Pittsburgh to New York on the eve of Pop... Getting to know Warhol as a painter.

Butterfly Cake (left), Ice Cream Dessert (right)

Influenced by his mother, Warhol was interested in art from a young age, and after graduating from university with a degree in painting and design, he worked in the advertising industry, where he gained a great reputation as a commercial illustrator. A simple transfer technique called blotted line technique to produce multiple copies of the same illustration in various colors was used.

Warhol, Japan, and Kyoto... What was his inspiration in Kyoto?

"Kyoto (Kiyomizu-dera Temple) July 25, 1956" (left) sketched during his stay in Kyoto and the 'pilgrimage' of the festival.

He also stayed in Kyoto during his stopover in Japan. Without a camera, he documented Kyoto's traditional facilities, culture, and cityscape while sketching in his sketchbook, and his sketches are on display. The works on display are unique to this exhibition. He was also interested in ikebana and kimono, and many ikebana works with wonderful colors are displayed in the exhibition hall.

The birth of 'pop artist' Warhol.

"Campbell's soup cans" are a familiar image to Americans, and Warhol ate them every day.

Pop art, inspired by popular culture and incorporating images from advertising and press photography into his work, blossomed in the USA, and Warhol was at the centre of it. His representative work "Campbell's Soup Can" was based on the subject of soup, which is eaten by everyone regardless of social status or economic power, and he wanted to convey a widely shared experience.

■Transience and eternity

▲Marilyn Monroe's "Three Marilyns", each with a different facial expression, on view for the first time in Japan

Warhol sought out objects from everyday life as subjects for his artwork, and he also created works based on famous people. He has been creating works based on the Hollywood star Marilyn Monroe, whom he has admired since childhood. In "The Three Marilyns", he tried to express the difference between the impressions of Marilyn in movies, television, newspapers, and magazines, and the real Marilyn.

Light and Shadows

▲First public exhibition in Japan - "The Last Supper", a large-scale work from the last years of his life that is rarely introduced.

A devout Catholic, Warhol's artwork confronts life and death. Referencing Leonardo da Vinci's famous work "The Last Supper", this work is filled with Warhol's own many thoughts and feelings as he was anxious about death. Warhol died the following year after working on this large and overwhelming work that was not only in vivid color.

Museum Shop Recommendations

The museum store sells a wide range of original goods such as stationery, knick-knacks, and T-shirts, as well as many limited-edition items such as Japanese sweets, sake, tableware, and bags made in collaboration with local long-established companies. Many of the products are fashionable and colorful, making them perfect souvenirs in commemoration of your visit.

▲The author recommends the collaboration product with Shinzaburo Ichisawa Hanpu, "Shinzaburo Ichisawa Hanpu handbag (M)," 13,200\ (tax included)

▲The venue is spacious, allowing visitors to view the works in a relaxed atmosphere.

▲It has being redesigned, including the exterior, when it was renewed in 2020.

■Message from Kyoto Kyocera Museum of Art to guests visiting Japan
The traditional culture and streets of Kyoto were a great inspiration to the young Warhol. We believe it had a positive influence on his subsequent interests, concerns, and production. Warhol was active not only in the field of art, but also in the fields of music, fashion, and film. While enjoying this exhibition, which includes many works on display in Japan for the first time, we hope that you will also experience the diverse activities of this artist, his eye on Kyoto, and the traveler's mood that lurks in his quiet expression.

■Location of Kyoto Kyocera Museum of Art
Kyoto city Sakyo ward Okazaki Enshoji-cho 124

      Nearest Station: Kyoto City Bus Stop: Disembark at Okazaki Koen

      Exhibition Period: until February 12, 2023

      Hours: 10:00-18:00 (admission until 30 minutes before closing)     Closed: Mondays (open if Monday is a national holiday) December 28 - January 2