Balloon Animals as Art from Masayoshi Matsumoto #ArtTuesday
There is a foundational bigotry in the distinction between “art” and “folk art,” or even “art” and “craft.” Why are the skilled, beautiful, meaningful masks of early cultures in the Natural History Museum and not the Metropolitan Museum of Art? A similar issue with far lower stakes is the plight of balloon animals. Relegated to birthday parties, table-side magicians, and clown labor, balloon animals have not generally been allowed their rightful place as art. Until now, in the work of Masayoshi Matsumoto. Here’s more from COLOSSAL:
Armed with colorful balloons and plenty of air, Masayoshi Matsumoto twists and ties a playfully quirky menagerie of inflatable creatures. A chemical engineer by day, the artist spends his off hours stretching the malleable material into a sticky-fingered tree frog or plump squirrel, elevating the creations typically associated with children’s birthday parties or carnivals into elaborate sculptural works.
Matsumoto is loyal to the bendable material and forgoes paints, glues, and other fasteners, and many of the animals accentuate the shape of the balloons themselves: deflated tips resemble claws and puffed oblongs hang like shaggy fur or splay upward like a rooster’s crest.
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