Exhibition Archive

Exhibition information

kyoto ddd gallery The 221st Exhibithions HEISEI GRAPHICS

June 29, 2019 - August 17, 2019

design by Ryu Mieno
  • facebook
  • tweet
  • url_copy

On April 30th of this year, “Heisei”—the period coinciding with the reign of the former Emperor—came to an end and the new era “Reiwa” has just begun.
Heisei started more than 30 years ago, on January 8, 1989, making it the fourth-longest era in Japan’s history. Its unusual length means that Heisei has forged a clearly definable “period” in the course of the nation’s history: three decades during which Japanese society has undergone vast changes at a dizzying pace.
1989 was also a major turning point in world history. Starting with the revolutions that occurred in Eastern Europe, symbolized by the fall of the Berlin Wall in November of that year, Communism collapsed and the Cold War that had been waged for so many years headed toward its demise. Out of these events, the world underwent a shift in direction toward democracy and pro-capitalism. This phase was then followed by dramatic social and economic globalization that ultimately restructured our world completely.
In Japan, during the Heisei era the “bubble economy” that began in the mid-1980s collapsed, bringing to a close the stable growth the nation had sustained for more than 20 years and ushering in a period of economic recession. In the technological realm, developments in digital technology made computers an integral part of everyone’s lives, opening up access to a torrent of information that sent the world headlong toward globalization. The resulting impact has vastly affected both our lifestyles and the ways we communicate.
As these rapid transformations were taking place in our social structures, inevitably the realm of graphic design—being closely entwined with popular culture, information, the economy and society as a whole—too became swept up in the waves of change. With diversification of information media, the power wielded by the poster as a medium of communication receded. Moreover, business corporations of the kind that, during the 1970s and 1980s, had been representative of the visual design of the age, were no longer to be found, and with them vanished the powerful charisma that had led the industry as a whole. Today, in contrast to graphic design during the years of mass production and mass consumption, diversity has come to replace uniformity and more individualistic modes of expression have come into demand. The areas in which the graphic designer is active have also broadened in scope, no longer being limited to visual expression but now encompassing projects of all kinds. As a result, design itself is in the process of changing significantly.
The “Heisei Graphics” exhibition will focus on posters created during the Heisei era from the archives of Center for Contemporary Graphic Art (CCGA) of DNP Foundation for Cultural Promotion. The works on display will demonstrate how graphic design has evolved in tandem with the myriad social changes of the past 30 years and also probe how the power of visual communication has impacted the times.
We hope that this retrospective of works of the Heisei period might shed even a small light on the pathway into the new era has just begun.

Opening Party

June 29 (Sat.), 17:00–18:00
Venue: kyoto ddd gallery

Gallery Tours

June 29 (Sat.)–August 17 (Sat.), 2019
Gallery Hours: 11:00–19:00
Saturdays and August 11 (Sun.), open until 18:00
Closed on Sundays and holidays *Special opening August 11 (Sun.)

Dates and Hours

June 29 (Sat.)–August 17 (Sat.), 2019
Gallery Hours: 11:00–19:00
Saturdays and August 11 (Sun.), open until 18:00
Closed on Sundays and holidays *Special opening August 11 (Sun.)


kyoto ddd gallery
10 Uzumasakamikeibu-cho, Ukyo-ku, Kyoto-shi, Kyoto 616-8533
Tel. 075-871-1480/Fax. 075-871-1267
3-minute walk from Exit 1 of Uzumasa Tenjingawa Station, Kyoto Subway Tozai Line
5-minute walk from Randen-Tenjingawa Station, Randen Arashiyama Main Line
By City Bus or Kyoto Bus, alight at Uzumasa Tenjingawa-ekimae
No parking available
Admission free


 DNP Foundation for Cultural Promotion