I went to the Kouga Hirano and Shobunsha exhibition at Ginza Graphic Gallery - DNP on Saturday. I wanted to see the spectrum and variety of work Hirano had created during his lengthy stay at Shobunsha as well as get some inspiration for a new series I am working on that will come out this Summer.
I was pleasantly suprised that one of Tadao Tsuge's books was included in the exhibition. You can see my photographs below.
Here's the exhbition deets -
"For roughly three decades between 1964 and1992, Kouga Hirano was in sole charge of the covers on books published by Shobunsha. Indeed, it is a rare feat a single designer to handle all a publisher's output. Shobunsha was the standard-bearer of the counterculture days, and Hirano's unique style blew a breath of fresh air through the publishing establishment.
Here, some 600 of the more than 7,000 titles Hirano Produced over nearly half a century are on display, focusing mainly on his work with Shobunsha.
There will also be around 80 works printed on Japanese washi paper on display, including distinctive decorative hand written letters; works freshly returned from an incredibly popular exhibition in Taiwan this spring, and many of his theater and concert posters and flyers that have been retouched by Hirano himself, some even with added notes.
Visitors are able to take the book covers in hand-just as if they were in a secondhand bookstore - to see and feel the close bond between books, publishing, cover designers, and the times."
I went to the opening party on Jan 20th. Below you can find some of my photographs of the event.
Here's the official show details-
"NANZUKA is pleased to present an exhibition of works by the legendary artist Toshio Saeki. This marks Saeki's first solo presentation at the gallery, and is the largest solo exhibition to date to feature a comprehensive selection of his original works.
Toshio Saeki was born in 1945 in the Miyazaki prefecture, and after spending his childhood years in Osaka, moved to Tokyo in 1969. His distinct works that interwove elements of eroticism, humor, and horror had gained the praise of Shuji Terayama and Tatsuhiko Shibusawa, leading to him to make his debut on the pages of Heibon Punch magazine in 1970. In the same year he released his first publication entitled Toshio SAEKI art book（Agrément-sha）, and despite holding an exhibition that introduced the original works featured, all of such had been stolen after its closing. Saeki's work soon gained enthusiastic popularity internationally, such as its use for the cover of John Lennon and Yoko Ono's 1972 album,“Sometime in New York City.”
The world of black humor and eroticism that permeate Saeki's works is replete with provocative gimmickry, which by means of unveiling various sexual taboos, serves to stimulate our inner selves. From observing the high literary qualities of his works as conceived through the various forms of love and desire that are inherent within them, it is indeed evident that such have not necessarily been depicted through mere lustful inclinations. Moreover, viewers recognize how the “lines” which define the exquisite boundaries between the simplicity and calculation that constitutes his works as art, through them increasingly amplify their persuasiveness.
Saeki's works that can indeed be considered as contemporary Shunga (erotic art) or Yokaiga
(ghost and monster art) are not confined to the context of Japan's underground illustration scene. Saeki continues to receive increasing international acclaim, having held exhibitions in recent years in countries across the globe including the UK, France, Israel, the US, Canada, Hong Kong, and Taiwan; as well as the successive release of his publications such as Rêve écarlate（éditions Cornélius), YUMENOZOKI: Toshio Saeki Artist Book (Kokushokankokai Inc.), and Toshio Saeki 70 (Seirin Kogeisha).
In addition to some new works, this exhibition introduces a selection of Saeki's original illustrations centering on those produced between the 1970s and 1980s. On this occasion, Saeki also engages in the challenge of creating a large-scale mural in color.
An opening reception with the artist will be held on January 20 (Sat)."
From the Gosh Comics Website -
"Ryan Holmberg will be at Gosh Comics on Monday 12th February 7.30pm - 9pm to celebrate the launch of Breakdown Press' latest, Fukushima Devil Fish by Katsumata Susumu, with a presentation on gekiga manga, focusing on the works of Matsumoto Masahiko, Tsuge Yoshiharu, Hayashi Seiichi, and Katsumata Susumu.
A comics and art historian who has become one of the West's leading manga scholars, Ryan Holmberg spearheaded the collections of classic manga produced by the late, lamented publisher Picturebox. Masterminding collections by artists such as Osamu Tezuka, Shigeru Sugiura, Seiichi Hayashi and Yuichi Yokoyama, Holmberg was responsible for casting light on a genre of manga little-seen by English language readers. In recent years he has worked closely with Breakdown Press to bring fresh translations of classic gekiga (or "dramatic pictures") manga, including their latest: Fukushima Devil Fish by Katsumata Susumu:"