Emmanuel Perrotin joined Takashi Murakami to add some pop and color to a rainy Paris night for the launch of the Japanese contemporary artist’s latest solo show Baka on Wednesday. Baka marks the artist’s return to a Perrotin gallery in Paris three years after his exhibition Learning the Magic of Painting and the 14th solo exhibition by the artist at Perrotin since he first met Emmanuel Perrotin in 1993. This time, the exhibit is housed in Perrotin’s Salle de Bal at 60, rue de Turenne, a space that Perrotin told Say Who “is normally closed to the public and by appointment only.” The artist’s iconic character Mr. DOB steals the show with six new portraits inspired by animated figures like Sonic and Mickey Mouse and whose name means “why” in Japanese slang. For those not able to see the artist himself during the launch cocktail, two humorous self-portraits in shaped canvas are on view at the gallery through the end of the exhibition on December 21stThe exhibit invites Art enthusiasts and collectors into Murakami’s colorfully imaginative world of monsters and manga complete with Devil Ko2, the latest in his succession of hyper-sexualized, life-sized manga sculptures including Miss Ko2 (1997), Hiropon(1997), My Lonesome Cowboy (1998) and Nurse Ko2 (2011). Downstairs, Perrotin invites guests to “dive into an aquatic universe”  and take a dip in Murakami’s Fish Paintings with two giant paintings more than 33 feet long on display “for the first time ever in Europe” and inspired by an original motif painted on a vase from the Yuan dynasty plus a bouquet of creativity with the artist’s Panda Flower Ball, his reinterpretation of flowers. The exhibition brought out a crowd of collectors and Art lovers like Claire Laffut, Sophie Calle, Nicolas Simoes, Johan Creten and more who braved the rainy night for champagne and a taste of Japanese artistry in the heart of Le Marais.

Photos: Jean Picon
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