I pick up plastic bags on streets, fuse them into a sheet to create cutout art. The Japanese tradition of funeral rites for objects that is founded on the belief that objects have souls just like humans, plants and animals do has influenced this process of sublimating waste into art. In my artwork, I portray these littered plastic bags to be wandering souls forever trapped in our environment, until an action is taken to release them.
I combine the wasteful plastic bags with Japanese Washi paper, which is created by methods that are highly sustainable and made from renewable fibers. Its manufacturing process is deeply connected to the local natural environment of each paper mill.
Using the plastic bags and Washi paper as media, I create fantastical narratives of integration of the human and the natural. The narratives are visualized as apparitions merging with birds and plants, while at other times becoming conjoined to their own inner monsters.
Read my litter picking journal here:
I participated in Vanha Paukku Cultural Center (Kulttuurikeskus Vanha Paukku) artist residency program in Lapua, Finland, for two weeks in December 2019. The studio had an attic as a storage area, and during my stay I created art re-using whatever materials I could find there: leftover old wallpaper, wood scraps, old nails, flyers and paper trash, cardboard, dried plants, etc. I had been using recycled paper and used magazine pages to create my work, but wanted to push my practice further into that direction of re-use. Working with limited resources in the attic gave me better understanding of this practice, and led to my latest project Thank You Have A Nice Day, a series created using littered plastic bags picked up on streets. I am very grateful to Vanha Paukku’s program for being the catalyst.
Papercut with collage, using flyers and paper trash
Treeuphoria seeks the boundaries where images emerge and disappear. This series is made with tree-rubbing technique. I created all the tree rubbing in Green-wood Cemetery in Brooklyn, New York.
Treeuphoria seeks the boundaries where images emerge and disappear. This series is made of reflective materials such as mirror and mylar. I created all these images in Green-wood Cemetery in Brooklyn, New York.
Dream of a Stone
paper, stone, wax on wood panel W 6" x D 6" x H 4"