April 05 – June 19, 2016
The National Museum of Art, Osaka
Graphic Designer, Ikko Tanaka (1930–2002) was hugely influential in shaping postwar visual culture in Japan. This exhibition, presents for the first time in Osaka, a selection of approx. 50 works showcasing a fusion of Japanese culture, traditional arts and modern Western design. After graduating from the Kyoto City University of Arts, Tanaka began creating designs for the Kanebo cosmetics company and the Sankei Shimbun newspaper company. At the age of 23, Tanaka became a member of the Japan Advertising Artists Club (JAAC), and in 1957, he moved to Tokyo, where he established his own firm, the Ikko Tanaka Design Studio, in 1963. Tanaka subsequently oversaw designs for countless national events including the Tokyo Olympics, and for companies such as the Saison Group and Muji. He also received international acclaim by holding numerous solo exhibitions and other events abroad.
Tanaka's work is distinguished by a fusion of Japanese culture and traditional arts and modern Western design from the postwar era. In addition to expressing Tanaka's personal aesthetic and serving as the origin of his creative work, it is a theme that he pursued throughout his career.