I am a multidisciplinary artist who was born in Japan. In 2012, I came to Canada with my family and started to live in Cowichan Valley on Vancouver Island. Since my childhood I have been passionate about making something; I liked drawing, sewing, woodcarving, printing, singing haiku, crafting with plants and found objects. In1998, in Chicago, I took a performance art class taught by Kym Olsen and Trevor Martin. I fell in love with that conceptual and experimental medium, and started to make live-performances. Since then, I have been given opportunities to perform solo and collaborative pieces in Asian, North American and European counties. In 2000, I obtained my MFA in performance art at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago where I learned from Matthew Goulish, Lin Hixson, Barbara DeGenevieve and many other amazing artists.
In my studio in Cowichan Valley, I teach Japanese woodblock print dyeing and yuzen silk painting. Both are techniques developed during the old times in Japan to decorate kimono fabrics. I used to love Japanese contemporary clothes made by designers such as Kawakubo Rei and Miyake Issey rather than kimonos. However, I became curious about Japanese traditional textiles while making sculptural costumes for my performances in Chicago. I went back to Japan and became a disciple of Master Tetsuo Koyama. Tetsuo demonstrated me how to design his contemporary kimono fabric while following traditional techniques. Knowing my plan to move to Canada, Tetsuo encouredged me to develop what I learned from him and make something different from kimono. He also asked me to teach Japanese textile making to Canadian people to help them make their own textiles.
Like my Cowichan Valley artist friends, Wendy Robison and Francoise Moulin, I love making art with other people. I have organized some community art projects, e.g. Ota Artist in Residence in Tokyo 2013, 2014 – Invited Cowichan Valley artists to Tokyo to live, create and show their art works-, “Meeting the Master” 2014, 2017 – Invited Master Tetsuo Koyama to hold his solo show and workshops on Vancouver Island-, “Self-Expression Art Series” 2017-2018 – A year-long weekly art classes & group show of artists with special needs in Cowichan Valley. Since 2018, I facilitate Bumblebee Artists, weekly free art classes for local people.
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