When we talk about Tokyo we think about the beautiful, clean, safe, urbanized, amazing architectural, neon lighted city, surrounded with the adorable cherry blossoms everywhere. Tokyo holds the reputation for one of the most futuristic cities in the world, and to a lot of people who visit it for a short time and get to spend time in the heart of the country mesmerized by the beauty of it, they totally agree for the reputation that it holds. However, if you’ve been living there for a longer time and get to really know all the corners of it and the history that hides behind.
Polish illustrator and digital designer Mateusz Urbanowicz is one of those people that has seen a different face of the city and has decided to share it through a watercolor painting series of the Tokyo storefronts. The artist was living in Tokyo for more than 3 years and was surprised to see a lot of shops and businesses in really old buildings. Different from Kobe, where the earthquake wiped out a lot of these old downtown houses and shops, in Tokyo, they managed to survive.
Mateusz Urbanowicz was born and raised in Silesia, Poland. He studied electronic engineering until he found out that making art could be more than a weird hobby. Following his graduation he moved to Japan in order to study animation and comics at Kobe Design University, thanks to a Japanese government scholarship. He then graduated with honors with a short animated movie Right Places.
The artist focuses on Tokyo’s storefronts and through his illustrations, we see a quiet and ordinary part of Tokyo that isn’t influenced by the skyscrapers and neon lights.