tokyo

Takashi Murakami, The 500 Arhats, 2012, acrylic on canvas mounted on board. Installation view. From the White Tiger panel.

Takashi Murakami

Mori Art Museum

Takashi Murakami, The 500 Arhats, 2012, acrylic on canvas mounted on board. Installation view. From the White Tiger panel.

IT’S NO SECRET THAT, from the beginning, Takashi Murakami harbored ambitions to become a superstar in the global art scene. And, of course, he achieved this goal in short order: In 2005, Murakami completed his Superflat trilogy—begun in 2000 with “Superflat” and followed by “Coloriage” in 2002—with “Little Boy,” exhibited at the Japan Society in New York. The show was succeeded by a 2007 retrospective at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, which subsequently toured the world, and, three years later, by “Murakami Versailles.” What is left for him to accomplish? The largest painting in history, maybe? Indeed, “Takashi Murakami: The 500 Arhats,” the artist’s first major solo show in Japan in fourteen years, presents four murals that cumulatively span nearly 330 feet in length, depicting five hundred enlightened disciples of Buddha (the exhibition’s eponymous arhats).

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