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Friday, April 9, 2010

Tomato founder gives live drawing show

Staff writer

All of a sudden live drawing/painting performances are the hip thing in Japan's creative circles. One of the most recent was by artist Ichiro Endo, who scrawled the word "now" on the April Fool's Day edition of The Japan Times for Art Fair Free last week.

News photo
Live art: Influential design group Tomato founder John Warwicker will hold a live drawing performance in Tokyo.

Now Japan's up-and-coming artists have the chance to see how a member of the older generation goes about doing their thing in public. Briton John Warwicker, who was a founding member of design unit Tomato in the early 1990s, will be holding a drawing performance at NADiff A/P/A/R/T in Ebisu, Tokyo, on April 9. The results will be exhibited, along with other works in oilstick, chalk and pencil, through April 25.

Although Warwicker still works with Tomato (whose clients include Casio and Levi's), he has spent much of the last decade creating a diverse monograph of ukiyo-e-inspired images titled "The Floating World: Ukiyo-e." The book won a Special Prize at this year's Tokyo Type Directors Club Annual Awards. The NADiff A/P/A/R/T exhibition, which is organized by G/P gallery, coincides with the award ceremony.

Warwicker explains by e-mail that one of two live drawings will be chalk on a black-painted wall. It will be "generated by optical response to every visitor to the gallery," he says.

"For John Cage (La mer) — The Floating World" runs April 9-25 at NADiff A/P/A/R/T, 3rd floor, in Ebisu. The performance is from 6 p.m.-9 p.m. on April 9 and costs ¥500 (with one drink). For details, visit www.gptokyo.jp

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