In a city dripping from head to toe with neon, inspiration is around every corner for illustrator, gif-graphic maker, and designer Keigo Inoue. There’s no shortage of unique talent in Japan’s capital, but this is a creator with no intention of blending in with the crowd; over the years, Inoue has partnered up with plenty of pop-culture icons from the OG Vtuber Kizuna Ai to OTAQUEST-approved idol group Cy8er. Harnessing a modern pop aesthetic that is undeniably in vogue with youth worldwide, his popularity is only growing the more collabs he participates in… and we’re thrilled.
Setting himself apart from the vibrant Tokyo art scene, Inoue transposes vibrant effects onto his ultramodern anime artworks to create his signature high-quality gifs.
Taking this technique to the next level, Ikoue recently tackled a certain difficult reality in Tokyo: the damning effects of the coronavirus on the bustling center of the metropolis. The typical meetup hubs feel eerie and lonesome, but with expert use of AR and VR, a shut-down Shibuya was resurrected into a Keigo Inoue cyberpunk dream world.
消灯要請で暗闇となった渋谷を自分のイラストでジャックした✍️✨#ゴールデンウィークSNS展示会 #indie_anime #cyberpunk #緊急事態宣言 pic.twitter.com/RNCsvXLvqw
— ケイゴイノウエ/KEIGO INOUE🍛 (@mushiki_k) May 4, 2021
There’s something simplistic and approachable about Inoue’s art style, but that idea of simplicity is completely annihilated by the time-consuming effort it must take to piece together these gifs and animations. This is the type of flexible art that could work anywhere: on clothing, on billboards, on computer screens, printed in books. It doesn’t fit into one particular niche, instead catering to the imagination of the masses currently trapped indoors. This vividness works as a mood stabilizer: Keigo Inoue’s art serves a digital pick-me-up.
For those located in Japan, the ANIERE POP UP STORE at Matsumoto PARCO will be selling exclusive Keigo Inoue apparel from 21 to 30 May, as he continues to invade mainstream spaces. From popular American VTuber Nyatasha Nyanners to Jujutsu Kaisen opening singer Eve, Inoue’s contacts cover a vast selection of global stars, and we can only predict plenty of surprising crossovers in the future.
During Golden Week, pieces of Keigo Inoue’s work were auctioned off at Project Emotion, an online NFT gallery highlighting some of the most unique Japanese illustrators. With over 1700 works on display during a 5-day period, the site offered VR support, and allowed digital patrons to peruse to their heart’s content, as with any normal brick-and-mortar art gallery.
If you weren’t able to snag a piece of art for yourself (or you’re not a fan of NFTs) there’s no easier way to make a statement than with Keigo Inoue branded merch.
You can stay up-to-date with Keigo Inoue’s creations at his official Twitter and Instagram. The merchandise (and more) is available through Booth, with those shopping from overseas able to use Buyee to procure some very stylish swag.