Born 1931 in Ibaraki Prefecture as Takao Iijima, Ay-O is a Jpanese artist, who is internationally known as the Rainbow Artist because of the rainbow-striped motifs in his artwork. He graduated from Tokyo University of Education in 1954. Ay-O started his career in the Demokrato Artist Association, which was created by artist Ei-Q in promoting artistic freedom and independence in making art. In 1958, he moved to New York. In 1961, Ay-O was introduced to George Maciunas by Yoko Ono, and formally joined Maciunas in Fluxus in 1963. He started producing his signature rainbow prints in 1964, and represented Japan at the 1966 Venice Biennale.

His works are included in the collections of numerous museums including the National Museum of Modern Art in Tokyo and Kyoto, the British Museum and Museum of Modern Art in New York.


Ay-O is featured in Sanbusaku 2 三部作

Animated Rainbow. Help, (1965)
Depiction of the Ten Commandments, Rainbow Buddha - Rainbow Hokusai, (1970)
Rainbow night, (1971)
Heart Sutra, (1981)
Cézanne, (1976)