Tadanori Yokoo
Photo-Collages 1960/2001


November 15 – December 22, 2001

Andrew Roth is pleased to announce the opening of an exhibition of ten vintage photo-collages from the 1960s and 20 new photo-collages by Tadanori Yokoo.

Internationally acclaimed graphic artist Tadanori Yokoo surfaced in the 1960s as a pivotal force in the Pop movement in Japan. Renowned for his psychedelic poster and album cover designs, he has continued his illustrious, multifaceted career as an actor starring in Oshima’s seminal film Diary of a Shinjuku Thief (1969), a painter, a photographer, and a book designer. Yokoo’s last exhibition in New York was a retrospective at the Museum of Modern Art in 1972. He has shown widely since then to international acclaim, and in 2000 he was elected into the Art Directors Hall of Fame at the Art Director’s Club in New York.

In the forthcoming exhibition, Yokoo will present never before seen or published photo-collages from the 1960s and a suite of new collages made specifically for the current show. Culled primarily from Life magazines, the ‘60s collages track his formative influences from dada and surrealism to the conceptual art of Duchamp along with Yokoo’s signature Pop imagery. The new collages tap into ‘60s iconography using old Life magazines as source material.

The new collages are featured in The New Yokoo Times, a 20-page newspaper published to coincide with the exhibition. Formatted after the pages of the New York Times, The New Yokoo Times is a spoof on current affairs seen through the filter of an altered consciousness, with a distinct absurdist bent. One collage titled Who Cares” featured on the “Editorials/Letters” page, we view an image of a seascape. Large in the foreground is a group of nineteenth-century Japanese women lounging in striped swimming suits, adrift in a boat. Behind (and heading straight for them) is a group of American tourists in leisure wear, packed into a speedboat on a fishing expedition. And in the distance, yet a third vessel, an antique clipper is speeding across the frame through shark-infested waters toward a swimmer dashing by as if in a race. The headlines read: “Managing the Yokoo Incident,” “The Battle Over Money in Heaven,” “Gravel Sushi,” and “A Time of Testing.” The texts are appropriated from rhe New York Times and various Japanese tabloids.