NTT DoCoMo's Mushroom Characters Appear in New York City Art Exhibition

Move Over Hello Kitty – Here Comes Japan's Next Hot Character

NTT DoCoMo's Mushroom Characters Appear in New York City Art Exhibition

More about the exhibition and artists here

NEW YORK, NY October 19- DoCoMo mushrooms ("Docomodake"), a family of mascots in the likeness of mushrooms and one of Japan's leading corporate characters, are set to become the nation's best-tasting mascots in an art exhibition entitled, "How to Cook Docomodake."

The unlikely company mascots were introduced in 2005 when NTT DoCoMo launched a service allowing unused monthly time to be carried over or shared among family members. The mushroom family was conceived to emphasize that DoCoMo was the only mobile operator offering the service, because in Japanese dake means both "only" and "mushroom."

Today the smiling mascots have literally mushroomed into ubiquitous symbols of happiness. Docomodake appear everywhere in Japan, used widely as mobile phone accessories, phone-game and picture-book heroes, stuffed toys and much more. Soon a Docomodake Nintendo game will be released.

Capitalizing on this unexpected success, DoCoMo has developed a campaign to promote Docomodake in public events at home and abroad. The USA debut event is a Docomodake art exhibition in New York City (201 Mulberry St.) from October 19 to 28. Exhibition hours are 11–7 daily. Admission is free.

A total of 16 up-and-coming Japanese painters, fashion designers, illustrators and artists have been invited to express their interpretations of mushroom cuisine. Among the participants are Matsui Erina, a gold medalist at the GEISAI 6 art festival hosted by well-known artist Takashi Murakami; Kentaro Kobuke, an established artist in Europe and America; and Kiyoshi Kuroda, a well-known illustrator.

Along with the art, an assortment of Docomodake stuffed animals, mushroom toys and figures, mushroom berets and Docomodake books will be available for purchase.

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