City of Vancouver
2007 Banner Program - Kimono banners
I like the symmetry of the banners when hung on the lampposts.
Committee Statement: THE KIMONO BANNERS
The iconic form of the kimono, which dates back to aboriginal people of northernmost Japan, reigns equally in the realm of costume and in the world of art. For Norman Takeuchi it is a passport to his Japanese heritage, a field of personal and historical investigation which began in 1995, the year he viewed Itchiku Kubota's exhibition of kimonos at the Museum of Civilization. Until that time, Takeuchi viewed himself as a Canadian painter whose work was rooted in the natural world of birds, animals and plants. But the Kubota kimonos, which he describes as distillations of seasonal landscapes, transformed his thinking. Takeuchi seized the opportunity to delve into his Japanese heritage for inspiration.
This explains why, in 1996, when Norman Takeuchi returned to painting after a 24 year hiatus, the former influences of de Kooning, Rauchenberg and Francis Bacon met on a new canvas. In Norman's words, "By combining the traditional shape of the kimono with contemporary imagery and painting techniques, the pictures reflect my identity as a member of two cultures."
In reviewing the last ten years of Takeuchi painting, The Street Decoration Committee realized that the kimono theme would readily adapt to street banners. Takeuchi created three sets of paired banners, each combining contemporary brushwork with archival collage, each pair comprising a complete garment. A clothesline of kimonos for the City streets.
With this resounding impact on the Vancouver streetscape, Takeuchi joins a notable group of masters. Banners artists Jack Shadbolt, Gordon Smith, Don Jarvis, Fred Peter and Rudy Kovach were all influential teachers during Norman Takeuchi's formative years at the Vancouver School of Art.
Barbara Shelly, Chair
The Street Decoration Committee