The Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam has a collection in honor of the Japanese graphic designer Shigeru Watano. Watano, who lived in The Netherlands, was an important link between the Stedelijk Museum and an array of Japanese designers. Thanks to him this collection could take place. In Colorful Japan 226 Japanese posters are featured.
The exhibition shows Japan’s unique graphic design work excellent. The oldest poster of the exhibition is from 1937. The most recent one is from 2018. One wall of the exhibition is an homage to the designer Tadanori Yokoo. In 1974 was the Stedelijk Museum with the help of Watano the first European institute which displayed Yokoo’s work.
Japanese posters are in comparison to Western posters very different. The Japanese poster aren’t as direct and often make use of nuanced and poetic images. The posters differ in style though. Some have vivid colors and others look very minimalistic.
Colorful Japan can be seen until February 2nd 2020 in the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam.