An elemental workshop.

Toranoana recently hosted Taiwan Gallery 2011, an exhibit of fantastic original illustrations by renowned Taiwanese artists – the end result was a display of “different stimuli and fresh technique”, as well as familiar faces.

The gallery is currently open to all free of charge at Toranoana’s Akihabara location until October 16th of this year. The event is a mile-stone of sorts, with everyone involved excited over what it entitles. “Taiwanese artists have become able to produce very high quality work, now even recently appearing as active creators in Japan.” And as one will notice below whilst skimming through the artwork, that certainly is the truth.

There are over 50 illustrations being showcased, all created by nine artists – some of whom are already quite notable for their work on several major anime series. VOFAN is a name few have likely heard, yet this man spearheading the gallery is the one responsible for the incredibly stylish character designs of Bakemonogatari. If you’ve yet to notice above, that is an original work he’s created featuring lolita vampire Shinobu which has been used on official merchandise of the series.

Toranoana’s artist profile list describes him below:

Besides painting and photographing, he also takes interest in the storybook’s illustrations that can relay the story without relying on words.

His forte is to use photographic techniques to create various compositions, playing with colors as well as light and shade to draw out unique lighting and atmosphere.

His experience involves drawing cover illustrations and designing characters for comic books, animations and labels, and his works could be found, for instance, on the cover of Koudansha’s “Bakemonogatari” series and the cover of Seibunshuppansha’s “Weekly Famitsu, Taiwan’s Edition”.

Aside from VOFAN, his colleagues all put forth their best work as well – the style is clearly of another class. Images contain anime girls drawn within a realm usually never touched by the conventional anime artists – girls are put into atmospheric environments varying from surrealist, to even perhaps an attempt at impressionism. Unlike what is the standard, these artists engage anime as if it were a fine art.

A selection of the exquisite illustrations are available for visual enjoyment below:

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