The grid has played an essential role in almost all my work. So, today I want to write a bit of what exactly it represents. Although in the world of fine arts, the most familiar grid is the perspective, a method of translating 3D objects to a 2D surface, mine is unrelated. It comes from the textile tradition, where the warp and weft intersect to construct a woven fabric. During my undergraduate years, I extensively studied various textile techniques. This experience has radically changed how I create.

For example, in a piece of cloth, the foundation is made by setting up the warp and then adding the weft. Patterns can be made by altering the weft in various ways, which makes the underlying grid more discreet. Nonetheless, the original structure directly influences the outcome. It is entirely different from how a traditional painting is done on a canvas, where you are free to express whatever you desire on a clean slate. Working with a structural element is what makes the textile approach unique. That is what you see in my works. There, the grid represents a framework, a premise, order, and logic. It is an element to be respected yet challenged at the same time.




Diagram for the series Matchbox Park, 2021


From the series, The Game of Life, 2019

シリーズ 「アミダ画」より

From the series, Folds, 2014


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The large park right by where I live is where I’ve been getting a lot of my inspiration lately. It is a familiar place. While growing up, I thought of it as my enormous backyard. However, when I first returned to the park after being away for many years, I was surprised to see the change. I noticed these protective measures being taken in various forms. Cautionary signs were everywhere warning users of the hidden dangers of the park. One stated not to play on the apparatus when wet and slippery. Another said to watch out for a long branch that was sticking out. Really? Is this necessary?! has always been my reaction. My favorite so far is the thick synthetic mats that are placed under the swings. These are the most provocative to me. I suppose it’s safer to land on this material than on natural soil. But it’s entirely in the way of having fun. As far as playing on the swing goes, I remember that it was the best after it rained and when water puddles formed under them. You had to show skill; otherwise… I understand it’s done all in the name of safety, but it certainly changes the way we approach the world. The other day at the park, I came across something unexpected after the last bit of rain. I discovered water puddles in some weathered mats. How exciting it was to see. What do we do now?

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This cast iron paintbrush stand originally belonged to my grandmother, who is a calligrapher. It was all covered in ink, so I started cleaning it but stopped halfway, realizing that it was an act of erasing my grandmother's traces. Now that I am using it, it has specks of yellow and red on it, and it's starting to feel like an ideal collaboration.

My grandmother is one of the most dedicated artists I know who I adore and admire. She practiced calligraphy up until her mid-nineties when she moved to a nursing home. She initially took lessons in her adolescence for a few years, along with flower arrangement and tea ceremony. She took up calligraphy again when my mother, her only child, had grown. My grandfather passed away very young, so when my family lived in the United States, she lived alone in Japan. Much of her time was dedicated to calligraphy and tending her beautiful garden. She was never interested in fame or commercial success. Calligraphy was part of her daily life and simply a lifestyle.



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