Exhibition of decadent art in Kagoshima – Showcased in Showa retro café space

PUBLISHED Aug 30, 2023

The exhibition

The solo exhibition and pop-up store & café of Kagoshima-based illustrator and handmade artist “decadentisme M.A.x.x.x.x.” are currently being held on the second floor of the antique shop and café Meizancho Suzaku in Kagoshima City.

Decadentisme, a Japanese female artist, was born in Kagoshima City. Her artist name is a French word meaning decadence. Within the eerie and dark themes of decay, she portrays fantastical female characters.

Decadentisme began her journey in 2010 as an illustrator and creator of various handmade goods. Last October, she held her first solo exhibition at the same venue, and this is her second show. The exhibition features digitally illustrated artworks in sizes ranging from A2 to B1, as well as sketches created during her high school days.

She crafts her illustrations using a drawing tablet. The backgrounds are meticulously assembled with overlaid motifs like crosses and plants, employing an intricate technique of embedding patterns within patterns. Her works are so detailed that they cannot be reproduced by hand-drawing, as she mentions, “Digital art allows for a level of detail impossible with traditional methods. I want to emphasize the possibilities inherent in digital art.” Each piece undergoes a conceptualization period of nearly half a year, resulting in only one to two A2 to B1-sized artworks produced annually.

Her predominant work centers around being a handmade artist, and for this exhibition, she has prepared an array of original goods under the theme of a “pop-up store.” From brooches, wallets, and coin purses to keychains and ringed notebooks, a multitude of items are available. She also offers clothing items such as dresses and T-shirts featuring her own silk-screen prints.

The venue, Meizancho Suzaku, is a renovated 70-year-old building that was once a fishing tackle shop. It opened in December 2018, with the first floor housing an antique shop and the second floor serving as a café. The artworks are displayed in the café area on the second floor, allowing patrons to enjoy the pieces while seated.

Decadentisme describes, “Akin to the multitude of cells in a body, my artworks contain numerous motifs. By taking a close look, you might notice many things. I invite you to spend as much time as you want in a relaxed atmosphere.”

Opening hours: 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Closed on Mondays. The admission fee is 500 yen, including one drink. Saturdays and Sundays are by reservation only. Reservations can be made through Decadentisme’s Twitter and Instagram accounts. The exhibition runs until September 10.

  • Exhibition displayed in the second-floor café area

  • Intricate illustration

  • Original merchandise

  • Section showcasing clothing with silk-screen prints