The Art of Yusuke Nakamura

Yusuke Nakamura is one of the most popular illustrators in Japan, and this first collection, “Blue,” sold more than 95,000 copies. He is a prolific artist who has created a huge body of art work.

Yusuke Nakamura was born in Takarazuka, Hyogo prefecture, 1978. When he attended the Osaka University of Arts and Design, he studied graphic design, copperplate engraving and silkscreen. Yusuke Nakamura who began his carrer as an illustrator in 2002, celebrates the 15th anniversary this year. His book “Now” contains 235 illustrations published after his first collection, and many of them are drawn for well-known CDs, book covers, magazines and advertisements. His nostalgic and retrospective taste will be a fresh inspiration for anyone who look for new ideas.

One of Nakamura’s most commonly reused visual motifs is the profile view of a female subject, framed by a montage of props, animals and miscellaneous decorative objects. His strength lies in the impressive skill of merging what is often a haphazard and chaotic jumble of visual forms into colorful, energetic mise en scene. One is reminded of the high-points of woodblock printing: Utamaro’s sweeping definition of the female form; of the bold blues and reds of Hokusai. Nakamura’s art is a delirious confluence of ukiyo-e, art nouveau, and anime–three of the most powerful forms of pop art over the past century.