In one corner of most corporate offices, is situated a creative brain who visualises ideas that are graphically depicted. These are the designers, whose name is often noticed in tiny font sized credits at the end or in the sidebars. The case, however, wasn’t the same in the 80s and 90s in Japan.
The exhibition Contemporary Japanese Posters shows about 65 graphic posters designed by 15 renowned Japanese graphic designers. “Both in India and Japan, posters have been a medium to convey information, maintaining the artistic element in it,” says Misako Futsuki, director of arts and cultural exchange, The Japan Foundation.
Futsuki informs that the exhibited posters have both the elements – text and graphic. “These posters pertain to Bubble Economy in Japan and are low-cost reproductions of the particularly famous works,” she adds.
The period of the Bubble Economy in Japan, ie the period between 1980 and 1990, is remembered as a period which was good for business. The same is reflected in the works of graphic designers, who have intermittently used vivid colours and symbolic elements. Take for instance, the poster designed by Mitsuo Katsui which triplicates the left profile of a girl and presents it in bright blue, green and red colours.
“Various enterprises invested a lot of money on advertising and publicity which allowed the graphic designers to try out different kinds of designs,” says Futsuki. She also informs that it was during this period that there was an increase in awareness towards environmental problems. “There were also signs of globalisation, leading to creation of many posters for international meetings and expositions influenced by such developments in society,” she adds.
These issues are visible in the posters designed by Yusaku Kamekura and Ikko Tanaka. In the poster Hiroshima Appeals by Yusaku Kamekura, the image of butterflies falling from the sky with their wings having caught fire depicts the designer’s concern for the society – that suffered a major setback from the nuclear bombings.
All the works by the 15 designers will be displayed in two consecutive parts.
CATCH IT LIVE
WHAT: Contemporary Japanese Posters, art exhibition
WHERE: The Japan Foundation, Lajpat Nagar IV
WHEN: May 13 to June 4 & June 10 to July 1
TIMINGS: 11am to 7pm
NEAREST METRO STATION: Moolchand on Violet Line