Born in the year of the atomic bomb, Takahashi became a disaffected social science student in Tokyo University and, in the heady days of the revolt of 1969, he threw petrol bombs while shouting the logan "pulverise, ulverise". Sought by the police, he was sheltered by a cosmologist who taught him about the new geometry of strings, black holes and curved multi-dimensional spaces. This underground double life still marks his thought.
Thus, Takahashi's own work is redolent of the new cosmology of string theory and most powerfully embodies the paradigm of escape via a wormhole from one universe to a parallel universe. For almost the first time we begin to see the impact on representational, or at least on non-objective art, of adult science and not just the of the first pages of school geometry so lauded in the past.
Takahashi now lives, appropriately, in the science city of Tsukuba in
Japan, where he patrols the frontiers of science, but he stays in
touch with the revolutionary student movement. Thus still inhabiting
parallel worlds, he may occasionally be seen on King's Parade in
Cambridge but simultaneously he remains an amphibian descendant of
the Floating World of Japan, since the eddies, vortices and waves
of his Japanese background still exert a powerful unconscious
influence on his pictures although now generated by mathematics
rather than driven by folk-lore and fashion.