I am an amalgam...a radicant artist, whose work expresses the transposition of culture and issues of gender-imposed stereotypes. Like the radicant in botany, who sends out roots to find new environments and nutrition in order to reproduce, I too, have branched out, both taking and giving as my roots have shifted.
My journey began from my youth, with the message: "Girls don't do that."...and it seems I have spent a lifetime proving "them" wrong. I have excelled as a ballet student and teacher, a professional seamstress, a translator/interpreter and language teacher....and...I have even been a heavy equipment operator at a construction company, where "girls aren't supposed to do that." I majored in mechanical engineer and ceramic arts, and have a BFA in 3D studio arts and an MFA in Ceramics. I doubt my learning has ended.
I was raised in Japan, but discovered ceramic arts in the U.S. My early teachers, Luke Sheets and Stephanie Beiser were both of the Balistreri-Voulkous-Senska line of ceramics masters. Their influence has led me to not only embrace my home culture in my work, but to recognize how my art reflects the newer, more complex me. Ceramics has become my bridge for crossing and blending cultures.
I enjoy wood-firing most, and am fascinated by how fire and ash, and the turmoil and peace of the flames can leave lasting impressions of beauty on clay. But, I often blend wood and gas, wood and salt and other firing and glazing methods to explore crossing boundaries. I also blend fabric into my sculptural pieces, which form a "protective wear" that shields weaknesses and tempers strengths. After all, I am still Japanese, and we don't like to overpower others with our strengths...and yet I am American, protecting myself from the arrows of those who still do not understand.
Click HERE for my current resume'
Click HERE for selected student art
Click HERE for my research & related art