Everything He Loves

Genichiro Inokuma’s Toy Box


《猪熊弦一郎のおもちゃ箱》(猪熊弦一郎的玩具箱)是一本展現他全部面相的書,同時也是展示他所愛的書。書中將其一生鉅細無遺地描述出來,他在巴黎的日子、跟老師Henri Matisse對他的指導、與Charles and Ray Eames的交往等等,不過我覺得最有趣的,始終是關於他的藏品的篇章。書中豐富的照片記錄了他奇特的收集癖,在世界搜來的破舊玩具、在街上撿到的糖果包裝紙,他將之與其他物品並列後,突然就變得被充滿魅力,美不勝收。他張著好奇的眼睛,看著輕如微塵的風景,卻看出湖光山色來。


During my recent work trip to Tokyo, I took the chance to visit the cat portrait exhibition of Genichiro Inokuma in Bunkamura Museum. I remember Inokuma once said he only drew things that he loved. It was an earnest statement. Regardless of how simple the cat portraits may appear, every single cat he drew looked so alive. Cats and his wife, Fumiko, were the love of his life. They always appeared vividly delightful in his drawings.

Genichiro Inokuma’s Toy Box is a complete archive showing the many faces of the artist; it is at the same time a book that showcases everything he loves. The book comprehensively narrates his entire life — his days in Paris, the guidance he received from Henri Matisse, his acquaintance with Charles and Ray Eames and so on. What I found most interesting was the chapter about his collectibles. The numerous photos in the book were a documentation of his rather unusual preference in collecting. In his collection were shabby toys and candy wrappers he picked up from the street. Juxtaposing them side by side with other items, their charm was heightened and suddenly became so beautiful. The most insignificant scenes became enchanting landscapes in his curious mind.

Some books are read but don’t leave any impression, some go directly to the shelf even before being read, but Genichiro Inokuma’s Toy Box is a book that I put in a visible place to remind myself never stop being curious, be free and liberated.