In March 2018, the Tower of the Sun was finally reborn.
After half a century of neglect the interior has been restored and reincarnated as a permanent exhibition facility.
In our last exhibition we took the opportunity to trace the history of the tower from 1967, when Tarō Okamoto was first invited to act as producer of Osaka Expo ‘70, to the completion of the restoration of its interior in 2018, considering the significance of the Tower of the Sun and the message that Tarō Okamoto tried to transmit through the Osaka Expo.
The current exhibition continues this theme, focusing on Tarō Okamoto’s work during the 1960s in the lead up to Osaka Expo ‘70 to examine ‘the Expo and Tarō’ from a different angle. During the 1960s, Tarōs style of work underwent a major change.
Prior to that he had employed delicate brushstrokes to fill his works with large numbers of motifs, but then black, abstract forms, resembling Sanskrit characters and creating a mystical atmosphere began to take on a central role.
These works were doubtlessly strongly influenced by his discovery of primitive Japan through his study of the Jōmon period and his travels through Okinawa and the Tōhoku districts. Perhaps, this might have provided a hidden theme for the Tower of the Sun and the Osaka Expo Theme pavilion.
In this exhibition we will present a birds-eye view of the magical works he produced during the 1960s in order to experience how Tarō Okamoto must have felt on the eve of the Expo.
It represents yet another circuit through which to perceive the Tower of the Sun.
Akiomi Hirano, Director,
Taro Okamoto Memorial Museum