Hiro Yamagata (artist) - Life in America - 1990s

1990s

A book of the artists work, “YAMAGATA”, with texts written by Arnold Schwarzenegger, was published in 1990.

In the 1990s Yamagata created official art works for a celebration of 200 years of emigration to America (1990), the Freedom Campaign in Berlin (1990), the 500th anniversary of Columbus's discovery of the New World (1991), the 3rd IAAF World Championships in Athletics, Osaka (1991), the Barcelona Olympics (1992), Kyoto 1200 year celebration (1992) and the Atlanta Olympics (1995).

At the prompting of Beat poet Allen Ginsberg, Yamagata started giving poet Gregory Corso a monthly stipend in 1992, which allowed Corso to live comfortably for the rest of his life.

He held a solo exhibition at Mexico City National Museum of Art in 1990 and participated in a "Very Special Arts" charity art event in 1993. He exhibited “the new Golf series”, made in collaboration with Jack Nicholas.

In 1994, Yamagata began making a documentary film about Beat Generation with Allen Ginsberg. He exhibited his painting on a vintage Mercedes Benz car as a description of beauty of the nature, “Earthly Paradise,” at Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery. This piece was named by the art critic Sam Hunter. Glen Ginsberg wrote a description of the car as “Hiro Yamagata’s spirit, the automobile of the 20th century” for the exhibition. (You can also see the process of making the Earthly Paradise on a movie director, Jonas Mekas’s HP.) In this year, “Hiro Yamagata’s all prints collection” was published. The “Earthly Paradise” exhibition was held in Hakone, Venice, Monte Carlo, Montecatini, and Tirino in 1995, Stockholm in 1996, Vienna in 1997 and Rome in 1998. In 1997 Yamagata held an exhibition, “Element-A Laser Installation,” at Fred Hoffman Fine Art Gallery. He showed a work from “Earthly Paradise” incorporated with laser for the décor of the Academy Awards Governor’s Ball at the Oscars. In 1998 He had an exhibition of laser installation, “Sculpture of Light,” at the First St. Bridge in Los Angeles. In this year, Yamagata had an interview by NHK and made his first trip to China. In this trip, he produced a piece which was influenced by Taoism. Also, in this year, he began a piece themed for Japanese spirit, “the Essence of Japan.” He designed a set of 80-yen stamps, “Omotya no Cha-cha-cha,” issued by the Ministry of Posts and Telecommunications in Japan.

In 1999, Yamagata's “American Lips” exhibition was shown at Marlborough Gallery in New York. He also produced a movie which is related to “Beat Generation,” a major feature documentary, “The Source,” and presented at Museum of Contemporary Art in L.A. and N.Y. He held laser installation, “Laumeier Lights” at Laumeier Sculpture Park in St. Louis, Missouri. Also, he produced an official piece for the two hundredth anniversary of the White House foundation. In this year, he visited Tibet because of an interview of Asahi TV station. Then, he started creating the series of “Eternity of the Silk Road.” Also, a PlayStation game which Hideki Tougi took charge of its music part, “YAMAGATA Digital Museum,” was released.

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