adrianのブログ

チェックと日本の現代美術界についての感想

奈良: ビジネスマンとしての奈良美智

2012年7月12日


In July, 2012 Yoshitomo Nara published on ART-iT in English and Japanese a set of comments about a blog article I published here on this page on 12 July 2012. The article was a rough version and Japanese translation of the chapter "Nara as businessman" from my book, Before and After Superflat (published in 2012).

Information on Before and After Superflat:
http://www.adrianfavell.com/BASF%20blurb%20page.htm

Yoshitomo Nara's comments in Japanese can still be found here:
http://www.art-it.asia/u/admin_ed_sp2_e/4YdEabseUS2JxFG0LmoI

Or in English:
http://www.art-it.asia/u/admin_ed_sp2_e/5KsBcfC0IJLgXx879d6S

The critical comments and corrections received from Nara were extraordinarily detailed and precise. Several required response and correction. I was and am very sorry for the annoyance the article caused and also any difficulties it caused his gallery in Tokyo at the time, Tomio Koyama Gallery -- because as a serious scholar and writer about Japanese contemporary art I had no interest in provoking "scandal", as the chapter was unfairly perceived to be doing. In fact, the chapter was an attempt to read Yoshitomo Nara's practice in the light of Takashi Murakami's theories on "art entrepreneurship" -- to explain how and why Yoshitomo Nara's own "brand" image has generated so much "art power" in Japan and internationally. My assumption was after the open exchange and my clear statement on errors and misunderstandings, the controversy would be forgotten.

Nara's comments provided many details that clarified my account. I noted below on my online corrections page for the book, those points I considered clear factual errors. These are still available. Most of the other issues revolved around my interpretations as a critical reader of Nara's work, and of the kind of "business" related metaphors I was using to understand his practice. Any book has mistakes, and I welcome all comments, corrections, suggestions and advice on how my writing can be improved.

Corrections to Before and After Superflat, as well as other responses to Nara's comments, can be found here:
http://www.adrianfavell.com/BASF%20corrections.htm

As a courtesy to the artist, I agreed to keep online the original version of the blog, with the Japanese translation, the incorrect version against which the artist first read and reacted. There were serious inconsistencies in the translation, and I believe it was a mistake to publish the translation in this form. Some of the misunderstandings involved were clearly linked to the translation issue.

Unfortunately, the existence of these false versions of my chapter may have perpetuated misunderstandings. Very few Japanese readers have ever read my text in English, and even then may have misunderstood its intentions. I have decided therefore to withdraw the text published here in English and Japanese as it is not the correct version of the chapter. The published version of the 2012 book is also out of print and no longer available online. All readers should refer simply to the new, fully revised, expanded, updated and annotated version of the book, that will be published in English and Japanese in 2017. In that text, any possible concerns that the artist or any other reader may have about the text will have been resolved.

For a clear, short and comprehensive introduction to my work on Japanese contemporary art, I recommend the following published article, 'Resources, scale and recognition in Japanese contemporary art: "Tokyo Pop" and the struggle for a page in art history':
https://muse.jhu.edu/article/609720

ADRIAN FAVELL
http://www.adrianfavell.com

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