TRASH-UP!! Records Presents “Idol & Art 3”!!

One of my personally most-anticipated idol events of the year isn’t TIF, or Jam Expo. It doesn’t even even feature performances for that matter. For me, it’s the annual collaboration between TRASH-UP!! Records and Tokyo’s Mograg Gallery, “Art and Idol”, now in it’s third incarnation! It’s a simple and irresistible premise, an art show where all the art is created by idols. Now it’s it’s third edition, it’s fantastic to see this event be so successful and well-regarded.

When you think about it, it’s a perfect idea because the idol world is packed with wonderfully artistic talent who are always pursuing multiple ways to express themselves. As it’s been covered before in this blog, idols, especially within the chika circles, are multi-layered creatives who consistently deliver an entire package of intriguing work beyond singing and dancing.

With previous showings, it’s been the practice to keep the artwork under wraps until the opening, and then after a few days, images of the participant’s artwork pops up online via social media. I find it fascinating to see what the idols came up with, and in some cases, it’s illuminating to see their creative output because it offers a new peek into their personalities. Other times, it’s just cheeky fun. (Like the time the Dot-chans presented miniature terrariums with chirping crickets inside!)  But regardless of what they do, it’s never boring.

In the interest of spreading the creative spirit, here’s a little social media round-up of a few of of the idol’s work. This isn’t all of them, I find that some of the participant’s choose to not share their work so publicly, and that’s fine of course. But let’s dive in and look at some cool stuff!

It shouldn’t surprise anyone, but the new avandoned are now an entire unit of artistic young ladies! I’d venture to say they’re the most visible presence in the show, and their works are all terrific.

Beni Usukura, idol, producer, DJ, multi-media all-star, and art student (How does she do it all??) shared a few new design works and assemblage pieces. I’m convinced that Beni will continue to achieve anything she wants, and this is further evidence…

Fellow new avandoned member Mana Shimizu has this beautiful, clean illustration style that I really love! She’s even already done some merch for the group.  This painting in particular is a real standout, and she’s contributed a number of other gorgeous works as well. This is a great, multi-faceted talent to keep an eye on!

The always endearing Erika meanwhile playfully poses with her delightful sculpture! (A self-portrait maybe? I see a likeness…)

And another new and notable avandoned newcomer, the very cool Nikki Izumo, delivered an interactive piece in the form of a poetry/writing journal, accompanied by a cassette recording of her reading from her works…

Utena Yuki, also known to her fans as NEMLESSS, offered up a what initially appeared in the show as a pair of starkly painted white matte-finish model tanks that she had built. But shortly later, she made a live-art appearance in the gallery and proceeded to hand paint her own graffiti-esque touches to it. It ended up changing it’s context completely, but no less “NEMLESSS”!

Suziki Kokone from SAKA-SAMA is always sharing her super-cute drawings on twitter, and the gallery show gives her the opportunity to share even more of her whimsical wares. This drawing is pretty a-maze-ing if I may say! (Sorry not sorry for the pun.) 

And here’s a little peek at SAKA-SAMA’s Mizuno Tamago‘s (Egg) adorable painting!

“Runaway Girl” Rukatama of Melon Batake a go go served up a brief bit of mystery for the opening. What were these mysterious items wrapped in aluminum foil a la Andy Warhol? She announced they’d be revealed later…

…and so later she unveiled her meticulously decorated…

curry spoons!!

Plus also on hand was this series of charming, hand-personalized wooden spoons. If Rukatama were to ever release a line of dining ware, I think she could find a market with these!

And Soze Nakamura has always had a flair for her own unique spins on iconic images. I’m guessing she must be a big fan of John Carpenter’s “The Thing”, because this is the second time she’s created a painting inspired by the classic film poster!

And Soze also created this is fine-looking ummm, duct-tape fedora? (Which looks better on Rukatama than your average neckbeard.) 

O’CHAWANZ also participated in the show, but I haven’t seen any of their works posted online. (No spoilers, man!)  Sugarsugar lala did share just a tiny a little tidbit though…

And Kai!!!!! Kai is rapidly becoming an icon in the sub-subgenre of “art idol”, and she’s got plenty of fascinating notions going on in her world. I love the digital renderings, but the minimalist floating panda head really haunts me…

Meanwhile Atomic Ministry’s Mizuho displayed some sculptural rice-snacks that were also a big hit! (By the way, a red dot placed on the title card at an art show means the piece is sold.) 

It appears that the primary hashtag for the Mograg show is #アイドルと芸術3, so go check it out and see what else gets posted as the show goes on. Usually a few more works get revealed online as the closing date  (August 11th) comes around.

Also, great job TRASH-UP!! Records and Mograg Gallery for a successful third installment of this wonderful concept! Thanks for giving these ladies a chance to explore new facets of expression. It’s truly a win-win for idols and fans alike!

Idol and Art 3 continues at the Mograg Gallery until August 11th!