Art & Design
Coy giggles break the air-conditioned silence of the exhibition room, followed by an amused whisper "I didn't see THAT coming". The two visitors are surveying one of the more graphic mangas, featuring a dark femme fatale with a mechanical hand in a close-up of a few sequential panels.
An older lady of about 60 leans in closer to examine studies, sketches and final drafts of a woman entwined with a giant octopus (which, although it clearly shows origins and inspiration in Japanese background, reminds me of Klimt's "Danae") .
Another visitor browses enthusiastically through on of the several digital copies of manga excerpts provided on the walls.
"Modern Love" is the culmination of the three part exhibition series revolving around the development of sexuality in Japanese art over the last centuries. This current show focuses on works of the 20th century: drawings, paintings, photography, wood-cut style and manga form with a majority of female artists featured.
Worth even more than pictures and a thousand written words? An interview with one of the featured manga artists, Sakurazawa Erica was available at the Doris Duke Theatre last week for a Japanese / English talk with a brief time for questions from the audience at the end of the session (as usual, I only thought of questions that would have really been interesting to me personally AFTER the event was over - will have to work on being more prepared). She spoke at length about her career spanning work for Playboy magazine for a primarily male audience, and after that as a story-writer and self-taught manga artist in her own right for Japanese magazines. Her stories are driven by character development, interaction and conflict with playful erotic scenes, sexuality, frustration and adversity as part of the everyday lives of her protagonists. Her work "Love Vibes" is part of Modern Love exhibit.
Art in Hawaii
Living in Hawaii is an inspiring experience, both artistically and spiritually.