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Takashi Murakami x Thanksgiving Parade

It may be a little too early to think about Thanksgiving for most of us, but Takashi Murakami is busy preparing “Kaikai and Kiki” for their balloon debut at the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade this year.

Kaikai, a childlike character in a rabbit costume, and Kiki, a companion with three eyes and sharp fangs, are examples of Mr. Murakami’s signature superflat style, but their balloon likenesses will be about 40 feet long when completed, and about three stories tall when filled with helium. Since the spring, Macy’s parade studio and Mr. Murakami and his Tokyo-based team have traded notes on two-dimensional sketches that were used to create clay models, which were then further refined and colored before the fabrication of the balloons (now underway).

Murakami will be the fourth contemporary artist to contribute to the parade. Past artists include “Tom Otterness (whose upside-down Humpty Dumpty made its parade debut in 2005), Jeff Koons (whose inflatable bunny followed in 2006) and Keith Haring (whose estate contributed to a figure-with-heart balloon in 2008).” Considering I live in New York City and a few avenues from the parade route, maybe I will wake up early enough this year to watch the parade on TV…