Tyga defended the cover of his upcoming album called “Kyoto,” which came under fire for its apparent disrespect of the Japanese flag when the rapper revealed it earlier this week. The cover, designed by cult Japanese artist Hajime Sorayama, features a barely-clothed, anthropomorphic tiger woman crouching on all fours in front of the Japanese flag. “I [have] been wanting to make this album for a while now but didn’t have the confidence and the story to express my true emotions,” Tyga wrote on Instagram. “This album is me opening my heart to you and I hope you enjoy it and love it as much as I do.” The rapper also thanked Sorayama for lending his talent. According to Pitchfork, the artist is best-known for his “erotic depictions of metallic female robot bodies.”
“Thank you Hajime Sorayama for allowing me to share this experience with the world thru your creative art and my vision,” Tyga added.
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While some called the cover art “amazing,” it also drew flak for its obscene use of the Japanese flag.
Instagram users commented:
“The art is not pleasin’ at all.”
“Looks like some weird fetish going on here.”
“Very disrespectful picture. Not sure what all these people see in it?! Everyone keeps saying amazing art… What’s wrong with people these days?!”
On Twitter, one user took the liberty to apologize on behalf of all black people: Tyga defended the cover and pointed out to TMZ that it’s only “the beginning.”
“I think it’s lit… It’s art, man. It’s art, you know?” he said.
“It’s not a flag. It’s a rising sun and the artist is Japanese. He’s a very well-known Japanese designer, so that’s why I did it with him.”
“Kyoto” drops on Feb. 16. Tell us what you think!