Monday, July 11, 2011

Art - Heal Japan

It's been several months since the disaster in Japan and I still struggle to put into words how much the disaster sits uncomfortably in my heart.

When I was first told of the earthquake, I wasn't worried because Japan always had quakes--we were used to it. Then the tsunami news came in with the horrible stories of the waves taking out lives. The phone was dead when I tried to call my family and I didn't hear from my dad for days. My family in Japan was luckily safe. Seeing old temples broken and all the hard-working, humble families struggling was tough.

Since Japan is a part of my life, though I was donating, unless I was personally there picking up the rubbles, I felt like I wasn't of much help. The art on this post is some things I painted after the crisis.

The bright side was that Japan remained strong, and said they will remain strong. Everyone around the world donated and helped out. It was good to see all the heroic stories that happened in Japan. There was no looting or insane behaviors--just people helping each other out. Seeing how Japan handled the crisis was a humbling experience.

Japan is making great progress with many things like science and art and entertainment. (Neil deGrasse Tyson show a map of the world in terms of scientific progress--Japan was nearly taking up the whole globe.) The comics and games from Japan were also a huge influence on me, shaping my career. And the culture, all the patterns of my past...cicada songs, temple bells, the tatami under my feet. I hope they keep going, continuing to inspire all of us. The crisis is still affecting Japan, so I hope the world keeps helping out.

Some links:

And if you haven't seen this heroic story...check it out!

Peace to Japan,


Thursday, July 7, 2011

Art - New House Art, Gorilla Cat

I bought art from my friend Tiger Parker! Check out his website...he does paper cut-out art. I bought a piece with a white gorilla holding a black cat. I like the idea of a beast holding a cuddly animal. The gorilla reminds me of the King Kong flicks me and my brother used to watch...and the cat looks like my cat, Baron. Tiger made this for a jazz show. Keep in mind every detail was carefully cut out and pasted by him.

Drawing by his friend, Laura Bearl:

He also gave me a rubbing of his ouija board art! I like his ouija board art because it looks very simple and iconic.

Tiger at his show:
While we're looking at my house art, I'll tell you that I recently did some serious organizing since my partner Joey moved in and also brought in his art.

My forever growing Tezuka Osamu comic book collection:

Skateboard art (it is hung up):

Record player:

Joey's pop art panels by his friend Lucas Vidana:

New addition to the dining table, also Joey's:

I'm going to a Casablanca symphony this week:

My favorite flower:

The beautiful elm coffee table my friend Kyle Wallace made me. I got to pick out the slab of wood and tell him the look I wanted:

My favorite Escher piece--there's a bird in outer space:

I designed this butterfly piece for Joey and got it made--two butterflies coming together and overlapping their wings to represent harmony, like a yin yang. (There's a polythemus moth next to it - not shown, due to too much glass glare - which is the same species as the giant moth that flew into the house during my grandma's last week of life.):

I love the organic, simple look. I try to keep my home serene--with a heavy dose of nostalgia, which tend to involve vintage things as well as fragments of my Asian/American background. Hope you enjoyed a peek at the growing art pieces in my home!