Artist Mami Kato, whose striking sculpture Umbilical Field is part of the Sugoi! 200 Years of Japanese Art exhibition, joins us to offer insights into her artistic inspiration and her process of creation.
Kato is a Japanese-born artist, currently based in Philadelphia. Her older work is about examining and reconnecting with her early life. For example, she has often used rice stalks as a material for her sculpture, something that has both a close connection to her childhood surroundings, and also a historical significance and symbolic meaning within Japanese culture. More recently, Kato’s focus has been shifting from her own personal life to more general human experience. Influenced both by Japanese Buddhism and science, she explores the intangible systems of energy and order that pervade the natural world, as well as humanity’s position within them.
Kato graduated from Musashino Art University and Tokyo School of Art in Japan and the University of the Arts in Philadelphia. Since relocating from Tokyo to the United States in 1992, she has been showing actively both in the U.S. and abroad. Her work has been exhibited in galleries, art fairs, and museums worldwide, and she has works in private, corporate, and museum collections, including the Philadelphia Museum of Art.
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