KONATSUNAGATA art show – A two person art show featuring artists Konatsu and Mark Nagata. Opens March 31 – April 1st, 2012. Harajuku Design Festa Gallery, East 202 Tokyo , Japan. Original art and Giclee prints, custom painted Kaiju Negora toys, and several surprises to debut !
So why the name of the show ? It’s a play on words sorta of .. Konatsu is not her real name, but a hybrid of names to form her artist name .. so KONATSUNAGATA is the same way 😉 Try saying it ten times real fast ;-P
In addition to our individual artworks for sale during the show, both Konatsu and myself worked on 4 pieces of art together. These four originals will be for sale, but we will also have a very limited amount of giclee prints for sale, hand signed by both of us.
Konatus works on Japanese Rice Paper or watercolor paper, so she sent me several sheets to work on. The 4 subjects were Eastern vs Western Dragons, Kaiju Eyezon vs Kaiju Drazoran, and the last two being Kaiju Negora rendered in our styles.
The Dragon was a bit challenging in that I wanted her to be able to somehow wrap her Dragon around mine. Since I was drawing first I had to keep in mind areas where this over lapping could happen.
The final image made much better by the fact that Konatsu is the better artist 😉
Again, my painting with acrylics in progress above ..leaving room at the bottom for the Eyezon painting …
Nice results !
I decided to place my Negora in a cityscape .. yes thats me in the clutches of Negora !and Konatsu picked up all my cues … making her Negora in the country and yes thats her in it’s paw !
The final image was used as a header card for the Medicom Negora release .. it actually does not exist in this form as an original piece of art, as it was assembled digitally for this print. Still a nice Yin / Yang composition and styles.We’ve had many requests to offer the giclee of Kaiju Drazoran Konatsu did for the Beauty and the Kaiju show, so we’ve made a very limited amount for sale again. This image is also in the latest Spectrum Fantastic Arts book as well.
And a quick tease of an original piece of art Konatsu will be selling .. wow !!!
I’ll be selling these custom mini Kaiju Negoras. Using Monster Kolor paints on clear vinyl.
And as we have reported, the debut of King Negora with Oh Nezumi ( Big Rat ) below ! These are the test shots and not the final product …
All work is for sale to those who attend. If by chance anything is left over I will let everyone know and how we will be selling them… I hate to say that I don’t think much will be left …
This will most likely be the last blog I post before I leave early next week, for updates please check out the Max Toy web site.
See you in Tokyo for this show ! Meow !
Over the years Mark Nagata has collected thousands of toys and a fair amount of titles. The man behind San Francisco-based Max Toy Company is widely known as: Toy Collector. Illustrator. Magazine Founder/Publisher. Toy Designer. Artist. Author. Husband. Father. But the one description that might fit best is an unofficial one – Kaiju Toy and Art Ambassador.
In the Japanese-inspired art and toy area, as well as throughout the larger toy collecting community, Mark is welcomed and recognized for his personal passion and commitment to supporting artists all around the world and the unique works they create. Beginning as a collector in his youth, Mark has had for years a keen eye for great art and a personal interest in collecting that he has spread through a variety of outlets.
Trained at the Academy of Art College in San Francisco, Mark honed his skills working for himself and for some of the most notable businesses in the country. As a freelance commercial illustrator, he completed works for such prominent companies as Lucasfilms, DC Comics, Hasbro Toys, IBM, Sony, and numerous advertising and design firms, both national and international. Mark’s colorful style graces over 40 cover paintings for R.L. Stine’s Goosebumps book series – Give Yourself Goosebumps.
After hundreds of assignments, Mark made the decision to move in another direction, and that choice has led to whole new career as a successful businessman. For four years, the owner of one of the largest Ultraman toy collections in the world co-published Super 7 Magazine showcasing the finest in Japanese toy collecting.
“I’d been collecting Japanese toys all along and suddenly realized it would be cool to have a magazine of some type devoted to them,” Nagata says.
Mark’s devotion to presenting collectors with a selection of original figures inspired by classic Japanese toys from the 1960s and ‘70s as well as new versions of licensed Japanese characters is at the heart of Max Toy Company. Named for his son, Max Toys specializes in custom and limited editions of “kaiju” (Japanese monsters) toys and artwork. Many of the original toys produced are hand painted by Mark, a tradition that goes back to Japanese toy makers of the past.
“Since our target is the soft vinyl Japanese toy collector, which is a very small niche, our runs of toys can be extremely small,” Mark says. “Runs range from 500 pieces of one toy to just one for a hand-painted, one-of-a-kind custom figure.”
Through Max Toys, Mark has taken great pains to widen the reach of his two passions – toys and art. He played a significant part in the development of the first group kaiju show in the United States. Held at the Rotofugi Gallery in Chicago, Illinois in 2007, the “Toy Karma” Show featured detailed work from artists from Japan, the U.S. and South America. Participants marveled at the custom-painted toys and art on display. “Toy Karma” led to Mark being asked to be one of the artists spotlighted in the “Beyond Ultraman: Seven Artists Explore the Vinyl Frontier” exhibit at the Pasadena Museum of California Art. The October 2007 show, held jointly with the Los Angeles Toy, Doll and Amusement Museum, marked the first time – in a museum setting – that the influence of Japanese toys on California artists was explored. The exhibit featured more than 30 of Mark’s original paintings, toys and a selection of his vintage toy collection.
Mark continued to be at the forefront as interest in Japanese-inspired art and toys expanded in 2008. Prestigious art houses Philips De Pury and Christie’s in New York and London sold Mark’s hand-painted custom kaiju toys in its auctions, spreading this unique art and toy movement into new and uncharted areas of the art world.
In 2009, Mark once again took his love of toys and art overseas this time to a receptive and welcoming audience in Tokyo, Japan. Here, Mark curated the “Kaiju Comrades” Art Show, once again bringing together artists from various aspects of the kaiju toy realm in this first-of-its-kind toy art show. The following year found Mark in Barcelona, Spain co-curating with Emilio Garcia “Kaiju Attack,” the European country’s first kaiju art show.
As the growth of kaiju art and toys increases worldwide, Mark continues in his unofficial role of Kaiju Toy and Art Ambassador. He has written and had his artwork and toy designs included in several books and magazines, both domestic and international. In 2010, Mark served as guest lecturer on kaiju and the toy-making process at the Morikami Museum in Florida. The San Francisco resident and his art can also be spotted in the first volume of the “ToyPunks” DVD and the “Toys R Us” DVD, while the video for the number one song by Owl City “Fireflies” featured Mark’s popular Kaiju Eyezon character. During this same time period, Mark has spearheaded the “Toy Karma 2” and “Kaiju Comrades 2” shows and has plans for future shows both in the U.S. and overseas.
“Max Toys allows me to produce original artwork, new toys and work directly with a lot of talented artists,” Mark says. “Max Toy is a synthesis of toys and art, both life-long passions.”