19 Sep 2018

Celebrating a legend – Akira Kurosawa

This week, we celebrate the works of Akira Kurosawa, and it's not just about his legendary films that influenced the history of cinema in many ways. You may not have seen his paintings, but did you know that many of the storyboards that he had created for his films were hand painted by himself?

Born in 1910 in Tokyo, Japan, Akira Kurosawa considered to be one of history’s most influential filmmakers began his career in the arts as a painter. Throughout his storied career as a film maker, Kurosawa never gave up on his hobby as a painter, hand painting the storyboards to his films. Inspired by both Japanese and Western influences, Kurosawa creates wholly unique pieces of art. These meticulously crafted art pieces would go on to form the visual backbone of his renowned filmography.

Take a look at some of his paintings, and it's not hard to see traces of them in the iconic scenes from Akira Kurosawa's films, like this one from "Dreams", 1990. 

His work has also influenced one of our earlier creation, the highly sought after Washizu by Staple X James Jean. The work drew immediate reference from Akira Kurosawa's film Throne of Blood, where General Washizu was attacked by a barrage of arrows in the final scene of the movie.

Therefore, to pay tribute to the filmmaker's dedication to art and painting, we have turned a common subject matter in a number of his paintings, a crying Maitreya figure, into a premium fine art collectible. This polystone sculpture was designed specifically to mimic his unique style of painting. Named Crying Maitreya, we have referenced multiple paintings of the recurring image of the Buddhist figure, in order to create a whole new work of art by itself.

The bronze effect gives the figure an aged grandeur that makes it a timeless piece, while the wooden base with Akira Kurosawa's signature in Kanji pays tribute to the legendary filmmaker.

Crying Maitreya by Akira Kurosawa debuted at YO'HOOD 2018, and a small number of 88 pieces will be available for online preorder on 22 September, 10am EDT on



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