Tadanori Yokoo

(b. 1936)

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(1936– )

Japanese graphic designer, art director, and fine artist Yokoo has become internationally recognized for his striking designs for posters, record covers, postage stamps, and illustrations. After an early interest and involvement in manga comics he joined the Japanese graphic design group Non in 1957, entering the Nippon Design Centre in 1960. He promoted a design outlook that was in marked opposition to the rather ascetic Modernist aesthetic that had been favoured by many designers in the 1950s, exploring the strident and colourful imagery of Western popular culture and combining it with Japanese sources and sensitivity. He became an important figure in Japanese Pop in the 1960s and established two graphic design studios, Studio Illfill (1964–5) and The End Studio (1968–71). In 1967 fifteen of his posters were included in the permanent collection of the Museum of Modern Art in New York. In the same year he was also featured in Life magazine and was commissioned to design a banner and poster for the MOMA Word and Image exhibition. In the 1970s his reputation grew further with one‐man shows at MOMA (1972) and the Stedelijk, Amsterdam (1974). He also designed the Textile Pavilion for Expo '70 in Osaka and collaborated with the fashion designer Issey Miyake on printed textiles such as the Paradise and Paradise Lost images for the latter's Spring‐Summer Collection of 1977. He also designed interiors such as that for the Arabian restaurant at the Tapei Ritz Hotel in 1979. His clients have been wide‐ranging and have included department stores such as Sibu, Matsuya, and Takashimaya as well as industrial corporations such as Toshiba and Seiko for whom he designed six watches in 1998. Since the 1980s Yokoo has been very active in the fine arts arena.

Subjects: Industrial and Commercial Art.

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