The Sweet and Sinister World of Japanese Artist Nara

Posted on May 02, 2018 by Alison Pierz

Custom Framing Nara print
Nara's artwork framed and ready to leave the shop

Japanese Neo-Pop artist Yoshitomo Nara creates distinctive characters and we were lucky to get to frame this little girl! We treated the artwork like a museum piece and floated it on archival mat board with rice paste and Japanese paper hinges. We then framed it with Optium Museum plexiglas and spacers in a maple shadow box design.

Nara is a hugely popular, multi-media artist but best known for his painting and sculpture, who’s been shown and collected all over the world. His comic like children and animals are depicted with little to no background and their wide eyed cuteness is off set by shady or angry expressions with accessories like cigarettes or weapons like knives or saws. His oeuvre shares stylistic similarities with manga and anime, but the artist credits twentieth century western cultural influences, like comic books, Warner Brothers and Disney films as inspirations. A fan of punk rock, Nara created an original piece that hung at the entrance to the 2015 Ramone’s exhibition at the Queens Museum. The artist considers his characters to be more threatened than threatening and they comment on the pressure to rigidly conform within Japanese society. 

Nara Ramone's Queen's MuseumNara's Ramone's tribute piece at the Queen's Museum in NY. (image courtesy of "Punk Archeology")

Nara has been represented by some of the art world’s biggest galleries including Blum & Poe since 1995 and Pace Gallery since 2011. In 2010, the Asia Society showed Yoshitomo Nara: Nobody's Fool, the first major New York exhibition of his work. In July 2017, The Toyota Municipal Museum of Art held a career retrospective of the artist's work, called For Better or Worse. 

Yoshitomo Nara artist in studioThe artist surrounded by his work. (Courtesy "The Japan Times")

This girl with her head in the clouds is a great addition to our client’s collection and just the latest in an ongoing flow of super cool contemporary artworks we have the pleasure of framing here at Frames and Stretchers. Please stop by and visit us at our Lower East Side location or in our second space, Frames and Stretchers Factory in Gowanus, Brooklyn.

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