Japanese artist Keiichi Tanaami has been a force in contemporary art for several decades. His latest work offers yet another evolution for the Hi-Fructose Vol. 38 cover artist, with his electric, vibrant pieces. A new show at Nanzuka in Tokyo, titled “Amulet of the Tapir” collects these new paintings. The show kicked off in June and runs through Aug. 5.
“Tanaami’s latest works, while seemingly presenting themselves as uncanny yet pop renditions of supernatural demon illustrations, convey various memories related to Tanaami’s real-life experiences, a release says. “USA bomber planes referenced from American comics and the personified bombs that shed radiant rays of light, are profoundly related to the memories of war that Tanaami had actually witnessed as a child. … Likewise, the various skeletal monsters represent those who have been injured in the war, and implicate our very own selves who live unknowing of fear.”
A vast number of Tanaami’s visions are rooted in his dreams. He’s kept a dream diary since the late 1970s, with these wild elements making their way into works even today. Also, in his new paintings, his “favored artists such as Chirico, Warhol, Lichtenstein, Jakuchu, and Escher make appearance.”