A picture is worth 1,000 words – and the new Bowery Art Wall mural may help spark a spirited conversation about “the diversity of New York City and our times.”
That’s the hope of Brooklyn-based Japanese artist Tomokazu Matsuyama, whose two-story canvas covered in a bright and busy array of pink cherry blossoms, cool-clad hipsters, flocks of birds and abstract patterns is the latest large-scale work to be seen at the corner of Bowery and Houston.
“The painting is inspired by … images you can find from different regions of the world, aesthetic tropes and ethnicities,” says Matsuyama, who was invited to make his mark on the wall by Jessica Goldman, whose late father, real estate developer Tony Goldman, began his support of the revolving streetside art project in 2008.
Matsuyama, who grew up in Japan before moving to Brooklyn in 2002, looked to a variety of sources to get his creative juices flowing for the mural. Among them, he tells amNewYork, are “traditional Asian paintings you would find in museums like the Met,” and “fashion clippings you would find at any newsstand” and “abstract expressionist techniques.”
After a month of conceptualizing and two weeks of painting that all adds up to a mural bursting in bright colors, textures and themes intended “to capture (the) diversity of NYC and our times. The image talks about us as a global citizen,” the artist says. “So (I) hope my mural will reflect our conditions of living in this digital era, where information is fluid and flux.”