About the Art Collection
Browse by Artist
Installed Art
Chicago Campus
London Campus
Kimiyo Mishima
Japanese, born 1932

Best known for her large-scale ceramic works, Kimiyo Mishima is simultaneously interested in and terrified of the circulation of information, specifically as embodied in newspapers and magazines— two materials that feature prominently in her works. A self-trained artist working in postwar Osaka, Mishima worked in close proximity to the Gutai Artists Association throughout the 1960s. However, she never joined their ranks, explaining that Yoshihara Jiro was too paternalistic. Instead of working with gestural abstraction characteristic of Gutai, Mishima’s early works employed collage along with color block painting.
Work 66-7A is representative of Mishima’s pop-infused collages that draw out a tension between postwar reconstruction in Japan, mass consumption, and current events. She combined pages culled from English language newspapers, Life magazine, and Japanese advertisements, often painting over layers of text and image. Even though Mishima insists that she only picked images that she visually responded to in her collages, the cacophony of visual information emphasizes the contradictions between human suffering and consumerism in modern life. The repetition of images features heavily in Mishima’s collages, especially the repetition of advertisements. In Work 66-7A, she meticulously pasted the same images or advertisements in groupings across the canvas. Foregrounding these repetitions in print media, her collages emphasize the superabundance of information and how quickly it is consumed and thrown away. She, herself, has observed, “Any and all information turns to garbage the instant one finishes reading it.” As her collages developed throughout the 1960s, the layers she adhered to the surface increased, suggesting an information overload inundating society.

More information about this artist

Kimiyo Mishima
Work 66-7A, 1966
162 x 131 cm
Magazine, oil on canvas