1963. Item #90412
Portfolio Collection by Satō Kōichi 佐藤晃一
These portfolios were purchased in Kyoto, probably about a decade ago. The innocence and assurance of their creator was puzzling, though not due to the skill, which is considerable, as Satō Kōichi 佐藤晃一 became a very well-known graphic artist and poster designer who was enormously influential in international art circles in the 60s and 70s. But puzzling because these portfolios date to years before he went to art school. Incredibly, the portfolios were published from 1960-63, when he was just 16 to 19 years old.
Why had these albums with their hand-calligraphed title labels, color-clipped design samples and some with printed laid-in text from Takashimaya's clothing department included in the folios been published while Kōichi was barely a teenager? Obviously his genius was being recognized at Takashimaya, one of the finest venues for clothing and fabrics in all Japan. The material presents an interesting and useful window into the early development of his aesthetic sense. But their very existence begs the question of who, why and how he became recognized, patronized and encouraged in his path. We have seen copies of two other contemporary portfolios of the same vintage by him. But one has to feel these are extraordinarily scarce artifacts of the artist and his post-War times, when all of Japanese culture was struggling to find a footing in the new world order that emerged from the disasters of war. There is much research to be done about Satō and his times.
7 unbound design presentations, each in a chitsu, with loose pages of textile designs, likely kimono or obi, from the early 1960s. Paper sheets and heavier presentation boards display a range of artistic techniques, including collage, stencil, offset lithography, laid-on glitter and metallic pigments. This lovely grouping of abstract and stylized designs represents a Japanese perspective on modern design meeting traditional craft during the late Showa period. A rich collection of original source material that is as much art as it is design.
Kōichi Satō graduated from Tokyo University of Art and Music in 1968 at the age of 24 and was immediately employed by Shiseido, a leading Japanese cosmetics manufacturer. Within his first year at the company he won the Mainichi Advertising award and just a year later ventured out on his own and established his own studio. He went on to produce graphic design work for major companies and institutions and his work from the 1970s to 1990s has been collected by MOMA in New York City as well as in museums all over the world. His accolades include the Ministry of Cultural Affair’s Art Newcomer’s Award in 1998, the Mainichi Design Award in 1991 and 1st place in a MOMA-sponsored poster competition in 1988. He retired Professor Emeritus from Tama University of Fine Art in 2015.
BH92 Satō Kōichi 佐藤晃一. Sōsakushū 創作集
BH94 Satō Kōichi 佐藤晃一 1960 Aki no Dezain 1960 秋のデサイン .
BH95 Satō, Kōichi 佐藤晃一 1960 Haru no Aidea 1960 春のあいであ
BH96 Satō Kōichi 佐藤晃一 1961 Aki Fuyu Aidea 1961 秋冬 アイデア .
BH97 Satō, Kōichi 佐藤晃一 1962 Haru/Natsu Kisetsu no Sensu 1962 春夏 季節のセンス.
BH98 Satō, Kōichi 佐藤晃一 1962 Aki no Aidea 1962 秋のあいであ
BH99 Satō, Kōichi 佐藤晃一 1963 Haru no Aidea 1963 春のアイデア.