At first blance, Kei Inoue, the man behind Tokyo Genso, is a blonde Japanese guy crazy about vintage cars and bikes, 60s mods culture, surfing and traveling through South-Eastern Asia. Despite having studied International Economics at university, he entered an art school and learned the basics of drawing and is now working as an anime background designer. He told us he doesn’t know that much about anime and manga, but he did like Dragonball and Hayao Miyazaki’s movies, such as Nausicaa and Laputa.
In his art, which he posts on his website named Tokyo Genso (Tokyo Fantasy), he basically chooses different places in Tokyo which he destroys through the help of computer graphics. Be it earthquakes, corrosion, greenery growing out of everywhere, you name it, it’s what you’ll see in his art.
We took the liberty of asking him a few questions:
What do you think is the cause of destruction in current society?
We, the young Japanese generation, don’t know the real meaning of peace or forget it. We are satisfied with what we get in life. Therefore, we are puzzled over what to do when a small accident happens. Many indiscriminate killings happened recently in Tokyo, with even small kids committing murder. I sometimes think they are greatly influenced by violence games, movies, anime or manga. Sadly, I help making them. Although they represent very good Japanese culture, they sometimes mess the young ones’ heads; they’re dangerous.
Where does your inspiration come from?
Last year on June 8, in front of the SOFMAP building in Akihabara, a man killed 7 people and injured 10 others. The murderer led a solitary life before the incident. Two days later, I painted Akiba Genso with heavy enthusiasm, this work succeeding in conveying my prayers. Akiba Genso is my best work of all.
Why did you choose this form of art? What’s the purpose of Tokyo Genso?
One of the purposes of Tokyo Genso is to convert your ordinary life to the fantastic world with the technical skill used for Japanese animation’s background works. I hope that the audience can reconfirm the meaning of their own existence and I want everybody to be more conscious about the great peril that can await us. I hope for world peace.