LONDON///FIRST LOOK///TAKASHI MURAKAMI & CY TWOMBLY AT GAGOSIAN GALLERY
Representing two diametrically opposed visual dialectics, the twin solo shows by eighty-one-year-old American painter CY TWOMBLY ("The Rose") and forty-six-year-old Japanese pop artist TAKASHI MURAKAMI ("New Paintings") currently on display at mega gallerist LARRY GAGOSIAN's twin London outposts (Brittania Street and Davies street respectively) create an incredibly exciting dynamic when considered in tandem. A progenitor of graffiti-style writing as fine art, Twombly earned his art world stripes in the late 1960s with challenging paintings depicting loose text-based scrawlings reminiscent of early bathroom stall graffiti. Murakami, currently the high priest of Pacific Rim postmodern Pop, is literally a product of his consumer-centric environment who both seeks to achieve the impossibly clean aesthetic of product in his artwork while simultaneously commodifying his art as product in and of itself. While the two bodies of work share little in common from a technical standpoint, the disparate shows are united in their visceral use of pulsating color. While Twombly's five monumental rose paintings are loose and primal in their execution with color employed as a prime and raw edged emotional force, Murakami's works are so tightly rendered as to appear silk-screened with colors employed as pure eye candy and reminiscent of the hues found in a toy store. Located within walking distance of one another, the disparate exhibitions make for a hell of an uplifting walking tour of the Old Country for those lucky enough to be able to still afford plane tickets these days, let alone the ever-elusive price of ownership. HAVE A LOOK:
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