August Six Okamoto Taro


August Six -
can we ever stop the
forces of war ?


Hiroshima, August Six, 1945

岡本太郎 明日の神話
Okamoto Taro : Asu no Shinwa - "Myth of Tomorrow"

An important antiwar mural painted in Mexico by famed Japanese modern artist, Taro Okamoto (1911 - 1996), has been rediscovered after thirty five years. In Spanish the work is known as Mito del Mañana (Myth of Tomorrow), and in Japanese, Asu no Shinwa - but like all great works of art, Okamoto’s painting speaks a universal language.

The gigantic mural depicts the exact moment of an atomic bomb explosion, with the focus of the work being an anonymous human reduced to skeletal form and burning under an atomic sun.

Okamoto’s mural was originally painted in the lobby of what was to be a high-rise luxury hotel in Mexico City, but the developer encountered financial troubles that prevented the building’s completion. Okamoto’s wall painting, dismantled and put into storage, eventually disappeared - and it remained missing until just recently. In 2003 the mural was found abandoned in a yard for building materials located in a suburb of Mexico City.

The Taro Okamoto Memorial Museum in Japan sent a team of restorers to Mexico to evaluate the condition of the artwork, and found that it was suffering minor damage. Calling the piece "Taro’s magnum opus", the institution obtained the rights to the mural earlier this year. The mural has been shipped to Japan where museum staff and experts began restoration work in July, 2005. Okamoto’s mural will eventually be placed on public display at the end of 2006.

The Taro Okamoto Memorial Foundation for the Promotion of Contemporary Art released a statement that in part read, "Okamoto believed that the myths of the future develop at moments of cruelty and tragedy. This mural speaks from his deepest thoughts, from his heart." While the world’s first atomic bombing of civilian population centers occurred in August 1945 when the U.S. devastated Hiroshima and Nagasaki with nuclear fire, it would be a mistake to see Okamoto’s artwork as fixated on those terrible events.

Rather, his striking mural is a warning to all humanity, and the message is more relevant today than ever before. That we’ve grown accustomed to living with a nuclear Sword of Damocles hanging above us all is really the core meaning of the mural’s title - and our continued apathy only assures that tomorrow is indeed a myth.

© Mark Vallen
Art for a Change

People in Pain


Peace and War and Haiku

KIGO : Hiroshima Day also: Nagasaki Day, Japan

1911年(明治44年)2月26日 - 1996年(平成8年)1月7日

google logo on February 26, 2011, his birthday





Anonymous said...

Thanks for introducing Okamoto !

What a vision !

Love From Germany

Anonymous said...

that which is the sun rises there -- hiroshima day

Gabi san
Some people here believe that WW IV has started (considering the Cold War was really WW III). We will only have world peace when there is not such a gap between the rich and the poor. I fear for my sons. I pray the will never know war. My parents prayers were answered for my brother and me because we never were soldiers.

Take care, my friends in Japan.

ai... chibi

. Comment from Chibi.

Anonymous said...

nor the "Summer rain" of the sixth Israelian war.
Three weeks of bombings...
900.000 refugees. Thousands of dead under the rubble.

The systematic destruction of the facilities of a democratic country.
More than 2.5 billions dollars of damage ...

bombed road --
in the cars are waiting
charred passengers


Anonymous said...

. Check this LINK .

Poems on Peace


Anonymous said...

motsu kuni no iibun toosu genbaku-ki

the countries that own the bomb
can pass their opinions
Atomic Memorial Day


Anonymous said...

in the name
of religion
generations lost

in the name
of our children

auwe (alas)

Anonymous said...

cruel rains
do not wash away pain
pray for peace

Sandy Vrooman

Gabi Greve - Darumapedia said...

数寄屋橋公園 Sukiyabashi Park Tokyo
Tokyo, Chūō, Ginza, 五丁目一番一号 / 5-1 Ginza
with an art clock citizen statue memorial by 岡本太郎 Okamoto Taro.
1966, small version of his 太陽の塔 Taiyo no To statue.