What to make of Makoto Aida? One day, he's filling a giant blender with thousands of naked young girls and whirring them into a bloody concoction. The next he's piling up dead salarymen into a great mountain — nay, several great mountains, which recede majestically into the foggy distance.

Of course, neither activity is carried out in real life; Aida is an artist, and, as such, he restricts his grotesqueries to the realm of painting. But still, it doesn't take too much hand-on-the-chin contemplation in front of one of his finely wrought vistas to realize that the guy has some serious, err, issues.

Some have called Aida, who despite his 47 years maintains the disheveled appearance of an art student, a genius. In fact, so many have applied the epithet that he has playfully dubbed his new retrospective at Tokyo's Mori Art Museum "Tensai de Gomennasai," which roughly translates as "sorry for being a genius." (The official English title comes from one of his artworks: "Monument for Nothing.")