Saturday, July 2, 2011

Ron English Popaganda in Japan Exhibit

As I've come to learn and appreciate, there's really no other city like Tokyo when it comes to the variety, breadth, and quality of art events. Other cities have world class museums, galleries, toy shows, and events, but none put it all together on such a consistent basis the way Tokyo does. If the city has a problem, it's getting the word out about all its offerings!

Today, Ron English's new exhibit (his very first in Japan, if you can believe it) opened today at the Alternative Space Gallery in Tokyo. The show runs through July 18, so there's plenty of time to catch it if you're in town.

The exhibit features Ron's paintings, prints, postcards, and toys, all of which have populated and popularized the pop art world he calls Popaganda.

The Alternative Space, located just one subway stop from Shibuya station.

Ron made the trip over for the event.
Let's start with the big toy cabinet which dominates the gallery's center space. The shelves contain a selection of standard and extremely rare figures for sale, display only pieces, as well as looks at what could have been and what may yet come.
 More after the jump:

Really cool set (the driver is removable), limited at this point to just a handful of pieces.

Ron designed this figure to coincide with the Alice film, but the toy never went into production.

Several colors on display here are samples only and didn't see production.
The toy that led to many more for Ron: Supersize Me:

Marquee piece created for the show.

Ron handpainted the Circus Punk. Display only (rats).

Super giant Charlie!

And a giant monotone Supersize Me.
 Sale table:

The gallery is nicely stocked with a variety of Popaganda books, DVDs, and toys:

The gallery's store section also sells figures, art books, and other items from other designers:

Back to the gallery space, here are shots of the Ron English art on hand:
As I looked at these, Ron told me about the CD cover Chris Brown called and asked him to design. The conversation then drifted to a Ron English x Slash (yes, THAT Slash) bust on the horizon!

I believe this was made by a Japanese collage artist.

The next few shots are what Ron called "mouse holes" - prints at floor level that, when shot, look like they're inhabited by raucous rodents.

A nice crowd assembled for the opening reception.

Ron graciously signed things and sketched for Japanese collectors.

An appearance from the red and yellow one himself!

People really got a kick out of McSuper's appearance, though he left the room after a little girl burst out wailing when she spotted him.
Well, that's all for now. Thanks for reading!
I just realized this is the 50th event I've covered on Kaiju Korner. L'chaim!

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