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Takashi
Murakami

Discover art for sale. Buy and sell prints & editions online by Takashi Murakami. As Japan's foremost Pop artist, Murakami's alter-ego Mr. DOB is now an icon of contemporary culture.

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Biography

Dubbed the ‘Andy Warhol of Japan’ Takeshi Murakami draws from traditional Japanese painting to create his unique, kitschy characters and works. Working in traditional media, such as painting and sculpture, as well as commercial media, including fashion and animation, Murakami blurs the lines between high art and low culture, East and West, past and present.

My Lonesome Cowboy by Takashi Murakami

image © Sotheby's / My Lonesome Cowboy © Takashi Murakami 1998

1. £7.8M for Takashi Murakami's My Lonesome Cowboy

“The title comes from an Andy Warhol film called Lonesome Cowboys. The work shows someone masturbating and smiling. It doesn’t have a meaning,” Murakami has said of My Lonesome Cowboy. Despite the artist’s claims, My Lonesome Cowboy and its companion sculpture Hiroponare two significant works in Murakami’s “body fluids” period and seen as his early attempt to represent manga (Japanese comics) and otaku (nerd) culture using Western fine art techniques.

The important piece achieved US$15.1 million against an estimate of US$3-4 million when it was offered at Sotheby’s Contemporary Art Evening Auction in New York on 14 May 2008, and remains the most expensive work by Murakami at auction today.

Dragon In Clouds - Red Mutation by Takashi Murakami

Dragon In Clouds - Red Mutation © Takashi Murakami 2010

2. £6.4M for Takashi Murakami's Dragon In Clouds - Red Mutation

At nearly sixty foot and produced in just 24 hours, Dragon in Clouds - Red Mutation is one of three large-scale depictions of the Japanese dragon by Takashi Murakami. Departing from the artist's usual multicoloured palette, this work draws upon traditional Japanese painting and is produced entirely in shades of red. In April 2018, the work fetched over ¥55.8 million (£6.4 million) at Council auction house in Shanghai, making it the second most expensive work by Murakami sold at auction to date.

Red Demon And Blue Demon With 48 Arhats by Takashi Murakami

image © Phillips / Red Demon And Blue Demon With 48 Arhats © Takashi Murakami 2013

3. £4.4M for Takashi Murakami's Red Demon And Blue Demon

Created in 2013, Takashi Murakami's Red Demon and Blue Demon with 48 Arhats is a salient example of the artist’s unique fusion of Buddhist imagery, Edo period printmaking and contemporary kawaii culture. This graphic work that features Murakami’s highly recognisable superflat style and bright colours, sold at Phillips for over US$6 million (£4.4 million) in June 2021, superseding its upper estimate of US$4.5 million.

Miss KO² by Takashi Murakami

image © Phillips / Miss KO² © Takashi Murakami 1997