Toru Narita-Fine Arts/Special Effects/Monsters
700 works on display! Largest retrospective in history!
The tracks and flash of light left by a solitary genius artist who fought against the times
The Ultra television series, which began airing in 1965, remains very popular in Japan even to this day. The person who designed the heroes, monsters, aliens, and mechanics of this series as well as those in Ultra Q (1966), Ultraman (1966-67), and Ultra Seven is Aomori-native sculptor, Toru Narita (1929-2002). The Aomori Prefectural Art Museum considers Narita a great artist and in the past has featured a portion of his monster design prints at the museum’s permanent exhibition. However, exhibitions that only focus on his works surrounding the Ultra world only allow us to see one facet of Toru Narita, the artist.
Narita was an artist who went above and beyond genres, expressing himself in diverse ways through his work as a sculptor, painter, designer and special effects director. After studying painting and sculpture at university, Narita made his debut as a sculptor, but became involved in several special effects art projects from his part-time job in the production of Godzilla (1954). In the Ultra television series, his representative work, Narita brought to life his famous characters, affectionately called “Narita’s Monsters.”About 50 years since the first broadcasting of “Narita’s Monsters” have passed and yet these monsters continue to be loved even today. This is thanks to Narita’s excellent production senses, highlighted by his high artistic sensibilities. After Ultra, Narita continued to work in special effects for television shows such as Mighty Jack, Totsugeki! Human!! and Enban Senso Bankid, and movies such as The Bullet Train, Senso to ningen, Kono ko wo nokoshite and Mahjong horoki. While working on special effects, he continued to show his oil paintings and sculptures at small exhibitions. In 1990, Narita, who further deepened interest and awareness of monsters in people of all ages and nationalities, produced a giant sculpture called Demon Monument (Fukuchi City, Kyoto), which is said to be the culmination of his work.
At this retrospective, we will introduce every facet of Narita’s diverse projects. We will draw closer to the full picture of the hidden genius of this artist starting with 187 design prints related to Ultra, unreleased monster design prints, and painting and sculptures during Narita’s early years and after the 70s, totaling 700 works.
Saturday, April 11, 2015—Sunday, May 31, 2015
9:30—17:00 (last admission at 16:30)
Monday, May 11
Adult ￥1,200 (￥1,000), College and High School Student ￥800 (￥600), Middle and Elementary School Student ￥200 (￥160)
*Amount in () correspond to group prices for groups of 20 or more people.
*Persons with physical disabilities and their caretaker (1 person) may enter free.
*Admission to permanent exhibit is not included.
Toru Narita Exhibition Organization Committee (Aomori Prefectural Art Museum, Aomori Asahi Broadcasting, To-Nippo Press, Aomori Prefecture Tourism Federation)
Span Art Gallery
NHK Aomori Broadcasting Office, FM Aomori, Aomori Cable Television, Iwate Press, Akita Sakigake Shinpo Press, Aomori Prefecture Board of Education
Ticket Preorder Locations: Lawson Ticket (L code 21828), Pomitto! Ticket, all Play Guides in Aomori Prefecture
*Tickets will be available for preordering until April 10.
*Visitors with preordered tickets will receive special Toru Narita stickers and original leaflets (not for sale) at the door before entering the exhibition. Also, those who purchased tickets at convenience stores will be able to exchange their tickets for original tickets at the museum’s front desk.
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