Awazu Kiyoshi - Graphic Design: Summoning the Outdated
Exhibition, Pavilion for Japanese Art, LACMA, Los Angeles, USA.
Designer and artist Awazu Kiyoshi (d. 2009) devoted his career to political advocacy and collaborations within Tokyo’s artistic community. In stark contrast to the prevailing modernist dogma that sought universal and impersonal set of symbols, Awazu imbued his expressive, hand-drawn designs with local traditions. He argued that the designer’s mission was “to extend the rural into the city, foreground the folklore, reawaken the past, summon back the out- dated.” The exhibition focuses on Awazu’s books and posters from the late 1960s through the 1970s. Drawing on historic Japanese visual culture as well as his own signature imagery, he created surreal compositions to promote films, theatrical productions, literature, and art exhibitions.