My desire to create art comes from my search for the meaning of our existence. I use my artwork as a key to understand others and myself. The most precious thing in my life is the growth process. Art is my guide and mentor....

Thursday, March 2, 2017

March Events, "Challenges of Nuclear Waste"


These warm days feel like the beginning of spring.  Every March I remember the Fukushima and Three Mile Island nuclear accidents. Our world is contaminated with radiation. Even in New York, there are high radiation hot spots. The nuclear bomb study started here. Coexistence with radiation is inevitable, we need to learn about and understand radiation.

I will be part of a Fukushima nuclear accident 6th anniversary event entitled “Fukushima & NYC  Challenges of Nuclear Waste”  In my artistic practice, how I express and communicate our social and environmental issues is my theme. A big wave of change is coming. I need to make myself strong so I don't get washed away. Hope to see you at this wonderful, empowering event.

MARCH EVENT
Minamisouma decontamination of radiation area

"Fukushima & NYC Challenges of Nuclear Waste"
March 10
Friday 7PM – 9PM
Goddard Riverside Community Center in New York City 
593 Columbus Avenue, New York, NY 

"Fukushima Remembered"
March 11
Saturday 1:30 - 5:30PM
Peekskill Presbyterian Church in Peekskil 
705 Park Street, Peekskill, NY Tel: 888-474-8848


Dr. Gordon Edwards, a renowned nuclear expert and the president of the Canadian Coalition for Nuclear Responsibility, discusses the risks and challenges with health, safety, environment and other issues associated with nuclear waste management. Come and find out prospects in the decommissioning of the Indian Point nuclear reactors, and more. 

Naoko Suzuki, a Fukushima evacuee, reporting health and housing issues, 6 years after
the nuclear accident. 

Yasuyo Tanaka, a New York-based artist and environmentalist, talks about decontamination of radiation in the disaster areas in Fukushima. 


Fukushima Rememberance Peace Walk  (Saturday only)
Walk with Jun-san and the Peace Walkers. Crane ceremony at the gates of the Indian Point Nuclear Power Station. Potluck dinner, and more.

EXIBITION 

“Women in the Heights - Disruption”  
March 8 Wednesday-30 Thursday
Gallery hours: Monday through Friday 10-5pm 
Rio II Gallery: 583 Riverside Drive, New York, NY 10031
March 10 Friday
Opening Reception 6-9pm
March 22 Wednesday
Artist Talk 6-8pm.

WORKSHOP

"Discover Your Collagraph"
March 25 Saturday and 26 Sunday
10:30AM - 2:30PM
The Elizabeth Foundation for the Arts 
323 West 39th Street 2nd Floor NY NY 10018  
646-416-6226  rbpmw@efanyc.org

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

What is home? Where is home?

Shioya town

A cold winter is coming after a busy, fulfilling fall. I'm looking over what I did and updating my blog while thinking about the future. 

 I held 2 solo shows in my hometowns on the theme of “home". In 2012 my hometown became the first candidate to be the final disposal site for radioactive waste. There was a strong opposition movement by my hometown's residents which caused the site to be changed to the neighboring town of Shioya. 

My parents' home is almost the same distance from both of the candidate sites that are state-owned forests. The spring water of Shioya town was chosen as one of the 100 best waters in Japan. This water flows to Yaita and to Tokyo. Transferring the waste disposal site to Shioya town does not solve any problem. However, some of Yaita's residents think the problem is solved. Therefore, I wanted to interact with people in Yaita city and Shioya town. 


"What is home? " Eco House at Road station Yaita

My first hometown exhibitions were successful and were blessed with a lot of viewers. The theme of “home" caught the interest of many people and I got to involve them in my workshops and events. 65 people of all ages participated by using their pictures, writings, and haikus in our collaborative bookmaking projects entitled "My home”. In their work, their love and gratitude toward their families, and their desires to have a society without war were spelled out with quiet signs from their daily lives. 
"my home"

 During the exhibitions, I remembered the days I spent in my hometowns from fourth grade to high school. It was a pleasure to reunite with my classmates, most of whom I hadn't seen in more than 30 years. I worked together with my high school classmates to present my exhibitions and events. We were helped by lots of local people and our families. 

There were many wonderful encounters with new people who had shared interests with me. One of my favorite experiences during these exhibitions was getting acquainted with local people who were volunteering to organize thyroid cancer tests for children in Yaita City and Shioya Town. My friends who came to see me from far away were also a source of great joy.

"Where is home?" Exchange Center at the Road station Shioya

 I revisited my past and noticed that my basic feelings have not changed much. I felt warm feelings for humanity and nature while touching Japanese paper from my hometown. I have now recognized my identity more clearly after living overseas for 22 years. Japan, the United States, and the earth are my home.

What is home? 
10/6 Thurs. - 11 Tues. 9am-5pm 
10/6 Thurs. 3pm Opening
10/10 Mon. Events
10:30am-12:30pm  Suminagashi Workshop 
2:30pm - 4:30pm  Artist Talk “Key and Home”
“Yasuyo in New York/Spring 2014” by Satoshi Yajimachi



Where is home? 
Exchange Center, Road station Shioya Tochigi, Japan 
10/11 Wed. - 11 Wed. 9am-5pm 
10/19 Wed. 3pm Closing (Potluck Party)  
10/16 Mon. Events
10:30am-12:30pm  Itajime Shibori Workshop
2:30pm - 4:30pm  Events
Screening
“Mayogoshiki” by Satoshi Yajimachi
“Endlager”  by WasabiChilli Films: 
Takashi Kunimoto &Renato Vazquez 
“Fukushima disaster area report 2015” by Yasuyo Tanaka
Panel Discussion
"Barrier-free railroad farm "Kazedayori" owner Masaaki Mizuno
"Hachidori: considering the future of children" Representer Shie Ida,  
"Orienteering Federation" Vice Chairman Katsunori Yamakawa,
Filmmaker Takashi Kunimoto, Filmmaker Satoshi Yajimachi
Artist & Educator Yasuyo Tanaka

Special Gusts came from Fukushima and gave us their up date report.
Tutomu Soma, Fujishima, Teduka, Satomi Teduka,  
Kenbun Hasegawa 



Collaborator for workshops: Japanese paper mills "Mokuan"
Tochigi Prefecture Traditional Craftmaster Yoshiko Komatsu
Co-organizer: Youth leader development · child rearing lifelong learning support Sophia Representer Yuko Takase



The Choices We Make 
Hebrew Tabernacle's art gallery, the Gold Wing, presented eight neighbors, eight artists, and seven poets for their 2016 Interfaith Thanksgiving Celebration. My print “transform 1” was selected by a Jewish curator Regina Gradess and was displayed next to a document of an 88 year old holocaust survivor. This print was previously used for a poster of my exhibition “In search of the meaning of our lives" commemorating Palestinian Nakba Day 2011.

This show at the Gold Wing ends Friday, December 30th. 
Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays from 10 AM - 5 PM 
Some evenings: Call to find out evening hours 212-568-8304  
Hebrew Tabernacle 551 Fort Washington Ave. New York, NY  10033

Dec 6th action in front of NYC's Waldorf Astoria 
to protest the Wells Fargo Pipeline Symposium. 

Native American Sioux tribe members are protesting against the Dakota Access Oil Pipeline that will contaminate their water sources and its construction will destroy sacred burial sites. During this Thanksgiving holiday, Native Americans and police clashed and protesters were seriously injured. 2,000 USA military veterans supported the Standing Rock protesters and got the construction halted at least until the court rules in February. 


Standing Rock Benefit Exhibition
Rogue Space is presenting a 1-day exhibition 
Saturday, December 17th from 1-5 PM 
508-526 West 26th St, 9th Floor 
Manhattan's Chelsea area.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Memory of War


This August, as always, there were anniversaries of Hiroshima and Nagasaki's atomic bombings, the Bon festival which enshrines and honors ancestor's spirits, and the anniversary of the end of the Second World War in Japan.


Miyako Taguchi, a Japanese second generation Nagasaki bomb survivor, talked about her inherited bomb survivors' stories in front of the Japanese Consulate in New York City on August 5th. There have been 71 years of peace for Japan since the end of the Second World War. The war survivors, having had intimate experience of the horrors of war, have been keeping the peace. However, their memories of that war are fading as they age.

"Manchuria"  silkscreen  collagraph  2015 

This is a photo of my aunt and uncle who returned to Japan from Manchuria. My aunt, who was a nurse, and my uncle who was a soldier, went to Manchuria. Both of them died without telling me any details of their war experience in Manchuria. While staring at their old photo, I tried to see myself in perspective, and in relation to my aunt and uncle, who lived in a foreign country, like I've been doing.

With the defeat of Japan, Manchuria became part of China. However, Japanese orphans have stayed and left their footprint in Manchuria. The short lived nation of Manchuria disappeared at the end of the Second World War. The illusory nation of Manchuria is an example of how temporary and tenuous national borders, land masses, names, and governments are. What is a country?

My aunt talked about how lucky she was that her family safely returned to Japan. I think about people like my aunt, who were at the mercy of national policies. This work was created by hearing from the memory of the dead in order to notice the preciousness of peace and life, which has been protected by many sacrifices.

I've been exhibiting my prints and essays at the Yaita City Public Library in Japan. These works were made using my family's old photos. It is a preview show for this October’s exhibitions in my home town.

“What is home? Where is home?”
Yaita City Public Library
Wednesday August 17th through Sunday September 18th
Yaita 59 - 2 Yaita City Tochigi Prefecture
TEL 0287435661
10 AM - 5 PM
closed on Mondays.


Open call ”My home"
Works by the general public that express their views about their homes will be exhibited. I will bind a book of the general public's works to show at the exhibitions this October in Yaita City and Shioya town. It is a collaboration project with the general public.