'A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Dog', in: Manfred Rothenberger, Ed., Lullaby Supermarket: Yoshitomo Nara, Nuremberg 2001, p. 9
Yoshitomo Nara was born in 1959 in Hirosaki in the Aomori Prefecture. His formative years were marked - if not marred - by intense feelings of isolation: born to emotionally distant, workaholic parents in post-war Japan and growing up as the youngest of three sons by a drastic age difference, Nara’s childhood was for the most part spent alone. Translating his intense emotions into a prolific, multi-disciplinarian artistic practice, Nara translated his initial feelings of loneliness and sense of abonnement into portraits of young solitary children set against barren backgrounds.
The present lot, Abandoned Puppy, Waiting, executed in 1996, is a testament to Nara’s distinctive and universally resonant oeuvre that quickly gained an international followership. Juxtaposed as a diptych, the child costumed as an abandoned puppy portrays the typical rebellious attitude that is evocative of many of Nara’s portraits of lonely children while the other work shows the same child in a tamed and awaiting position. By creating works that are both deeply personal, Nara’s oeuvre is at once strongly individual yet very relatable.
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