Japanese Pop Art is an important movement, and Superflat, the post-mod, sub-category founded by Takashi Murakami (b. 1962), is a mix of manga and anime, a critique of the otaku lifestyle (those obsessed with manga and anime) and a response to the homogenization of post-war Japanese culture. Got that? Murakami hangs (literally) with such wacked-out artists as Takano, Aoshima, and Nara. Placing these characters in the stream of art history is best left to art historians, but we know what we like. We like these guys. Yoshitomo Nara (b. 1959) is a particular favorite who makes cute and disturbing kids, animals, and floating faces.
A favorite of critics and hipsters alike, Nara dazzles with simple form and shape, but pleases the Hello Kitty Generation with big-eyed cuteness.