This collection invites you to join the garden: “A corner of the internet where art, community, and culture fuse to create magic.” Created by four anonymous men, Azuki has seized the attention of the digital artscape. The subjects are profiles of beautifully rendered anime faces, each adorned with a myriad of dazzling variations: eyes, clothing, headgear, weaponry, and mouths are unique in each portrait. As the artists’ manifesto seeks to build a world that is created by more and owned by all, these characters represent a spirited, adventurous, and rebellious assembly.
Azuki 3259 glows incandescently silver with dreamy eyes as she wields a hook sword. A sunflower in her ear brings this spirit closer to the natural world. Meanwhile, the human figure of Azuki 9848 is dressed like a cat, glowering with burning golden eyes to match a golden bat as his golden cat kigurumi is bewitched with fireflies. Others are less poised for battle, such as Azuki 536 with her calm, gentle eyes, sweet pink pixie hair, and katana. Another katana carrier, Azuki 4992 stares cooly through plumes of smoke with indifferent eyes, chewing pensively on a piece of grass, while Azuki 9871 pouts while carrying a lightning orb that is nearly as bright as his eyebrow piercing. The lines are clear, colors rich and vibrant. Each face looks leftward, in the posture of a pirate scanning the horizon for the next frontier, the next adventure. The lines of the hair curve and flow to give a sense of movement and rush, as though they are sailing through the thrilling winds of change.
The incorporation of ancient weapons and artifacts pays homage to the rich Asian culture, drawn with exceptional detail. There is a universal appeal to these pieces, as these characters embody the spirit of adventure and are the captains of wanderlust, headed into uncharted territory, armed to the teeth with glorious weaponry and treasures as they foray into a new world that glitters and awaits their conquering.