NEWS///KAWS IN THE NEW YORK TIMES…

August 3, 2008  |  KAWS, News, NYC  |  Comments Off

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Carefully cultivating his highly personal and multifaceted career outside the mainstream gallery world to this point, Supertouch buddy KAWS is about to dive headfirst into the shark-infested waters of the "real" art world with upcoming solo shows in NYC, Miami, and LA. Taking note of his career arc is NY TIMES writer ROB WALKER who penned the following profile of Mr. Donnelley for the paper's August 3rd edition:

CONSUMED
New Looks: KAWS
By Rob Walker (Published: August 3, 2008, NY Times)
At 33, Brian Donnelly is enjoying a successful art career. Working out of a studio in Brooklyn, he has sold paintings to Pharrell Williams, the rapper and producer; Nigo, the designer-entrepreneur; and Takashi Murakami, the international art star, among others. He has also created a variety of products including toys, apparel and even pillows — and indeed he has his own store, Original Fake, in Tokyo. He has also been widely known in the “street art” world for years; one of his early altered-phone-booth-ad posters recently traded hands on eBay for $22,000. One thing Donnelly had not done until lately, however, is forge a relationship with a dealer or art gallery. This wasn’t because he shunned or had a problem with the traditional gallery system. He says it’s just that “nobody asked.” READ ON: Read More

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TOKYO///TOYBOX///KAWS’ PIPO KUN HELPS TAKE A BITE OUT OF CRIME IN THE WORLD’S SAFEST COUNTRY…

July 24, 2008  |  Art & Commerce, KAWS, News, NYC, Tokyo, Toybox, Vinyl Fetish  |  Comments Off

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Pipo Kun on the job keeping the toy asile safe for otaku nerds everywhere...

Tokyo travelers know that the national obsession with kawaii ("cute") character mascots is ubiquitous to the point that even the police have their own cartoon buddy, PIPO KUN, to keep them warm & fuzzy inside (too bad the same's not true here, we can only imagine the mascots the LAPD & NYPD would come up with). In a very unofficially sanctioned homage to the gunless wonders that keep Japan the safest country on the planet, Supertouch buddy KAWS has just released two colorways of his own XX-eyed version of the little do-gooder called "JPP" for sale on his personal website. Produced by MEDICOM TOYS for KAWS' ORIGINAL FAKE label, the little buggers are 8" of crime-stopping vinyl in either yellow or black (1,000 pieces produced per colorway), and will set you back $98 each. Don't sleep; these will disappear faster than John McCain's presidential run. HAVE A LOOK: Read More

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TOKYO///ART & COMMERCE///KAWS x MARK DEAN VECA’S NEW BLITZ IN ALL ITS GOREY GLORY…

July 12, 2008  |  art, Art & Commerce, KAWS, News, Tokyo  |  Comments Off

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In their ongoing graphics collaboration for ORIGINAL FAKE, Supertouch homies MARK DEAN VECA and Mr KAWS have again teamed up to bring you this hyperdetailed Veca-penned rendering of XX-eyed mastermind's classic Blitz bomb character. Look for it on T-shirts in Fall 2008. As for the original, you'll have to get an invitation to KAWS' house to see it on his wall...

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TAIPEI///OPENINGS///KAWS x YUE MINJUN AT “ART FOR THE MASSES”…

July 9, 2008  |  art, Art & Commerce, KAWS, News, Openings, Toybox, Vinyl Fetish, Worldwide  |  Comments Off

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Yue Minjun's "Mr Pink" gets shy...

As we mentioned previously, perennial ST homeboy KAWS teamed up with Chinese Pop Art god YUE MINJUN to create a special figure for the MUSEUM OF TOMORROW’s “fine art toy” show titled “Art For The Masses” that opened last week in Taipei. Featuring new sculpts displayed alongside original artworks by ZHOU TIEN HAI, LIU YE, JING YU, ZHOU CHUN YA, the show is the first to address the genre for a Chinese audience incorporating domestic modern artists. All figures have been produced in runs of 100 pieces for sale in complete sets only at the museum and are not being distributed domestically. And yes, they’re expensive. HAVE A LOOK: Read More

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TAIPEI///TOYBOX///KAWS x YUE MINJUN AT THE MUSEUM OF TOMORROW…

June 28, 2008  |  Art & Commerce, Cool Shit, KAWS, News, Toybox, Vinyl Fetish  |  Comments Off

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The new holy grail of vinyl toydom. He's laughing at how much you're going to pay... 

Yeah, that thing's real. It's a special collaborative figure made by KAWS and Chinese art phenomenon YUE MINJUN for a special show of vinyl toys designed by Chinese artists called "Art For The Masses" at Taipei's MUSEUM OF TOMORROW that opened tonite (through July 27th). Featuring new sculpts by  ZHOU TIEN HAI, LIU YE, JING YU, ZHOU CHUN YA, and YUE MINJUN (with KAWS), the show is the first to address the genre for a Chinese audience incorporating domestic modern artists. All figures have been produced in runs of 500 pieces for sale at the museum and are not being distributed domestically. Translation: keep your eyes on eBay and your PayPal account locked & loaded. HAVE A LOOK: Read More

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NYC///KAWS AND “EVERYTHING ELSE”…

June 25, 2008  |  art, KAWS, News, NYC, Openings  |  Comments Off

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KAWS' little blue men...

"Everything Else," a group show curated by CHRIS CHURCHILL at FRANKLIN PARRASCH GALLERY in NYC features the work of 16 artists but to be honest, it's notable primarily for the inclusion of just one: the ever-elusive gallery ghost known as KAWS. Sidestepping the formal art world almost entirely in recent years, choosing instead to sell paintings—many of which were top flight large-scale works—directly to private collectors, the streetwear & collectibles phenomenon known to his parents as Brian Donnelley put the brakes on a formal art career primed for takeoff following his debut installation at Manhattan’s New Museum in 2000. Choosing instead to publicly focus on a burgeoning merchandise empire in recent years, his inclusion in this show (one submission includes his 4' Companion figure but it's always been more of a sculpture than a "toy" anyway) is particularly relevant as it marks an official return to the gallery world with several large shows currently in the works. Also included in this show, which seeks to examine why “things” get made and questions “what are the demands of a culture that prompts such production and how do the products of everyday life touch on the spiritual and the immaterial?," are original artworks by Jason Adkins, Bryan Bowie, Anthony Campuzano, Jason Frazier, Misaki Kawai, Michael J. Kelly, Wook Kim, Wes Lang, Sandra Eula Lee, Rebecca Potts, George Stoll, Keith Tallett, Xavier Veilhan, Jocko Weyland, and Jesse Wine. HAVE A LOOK: Read More

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LA///FASHION///BAPE HOLLYWOOD OPEN FOR BUSINESS…

April 24, 2008  |  Fashion, KAWS, LA, News, Next Big Thing, Street Life  |  Comments Off

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OG streetwear homeboys Nigo & Takashi Murakami flex their street cred...

Love it or leave it, NIGO's LA branch of the legendary Tokyo streetwear brand BAPE (aka: A Bathing Ape)—the brand that launched a thousand imitators—opened for business on Melrose Ave this Thursday nite with a star-studded media frenzy of a debut party. Two years too late? Yep, but remember this is LA, Ed Hardy and Crooks & Castles are still "cool" brands here. HAVE A LOOK: Read More

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