Graphic Wave 2006

Yesterday I stopped by the Ginza Graphic Gallery on the first day of the terrific new show they have on, “Graphic Wave 2006” (TAB entry), which covers the works of graphic designers/art directors Masayoshi Kodaira, Naomi Hirabayashi, Manabu Mizuno, and Eiji Yamada. The basement floor plays host to some of their past works, but the main floor is devoted to the show’s theme, “School of Design,” with works created specifically with that theme in mind. Even better, they present the whole thing as a sort of design class, with a beautifully produced accompanying textbook, as well as a similarly sized notebook, both with gold embossed front and back covers. I picked up both (there’s also a smaller book covering the designers’ past works).

Now despite all this, I must say that I was quite disappointed by the way the organizers reacted to visitors on this first day. As I entered, they were still placing the last remaining pieces on the wall, with photographers waiting to start taking pictures of the exhibition, so the main floor was a bit crowded. I asked if it was OK to enter (the gallery was officially open), but as I walked around I kept having to walk around people, even though only 2-3 were working on putting pieces, and the rest were basically standing around. People blocking other works never moved, and I started feeling quite uncomfortable by what felt like a lack of any care to those who were there to enjoy the show. They also really need to rethink the way they have indicated who did what in the basement, as there are no indications near the works, and the map they have on a wall is shown upside down (compared to the way you should be viewing the room).