I’m excited to share with you all the beautiful work I experienced this week created by Kiyomi Fukui.
First, a little bit of background on the artist, herself. Kiyomi is 27 years old, a graduate student at Cal State Long Beach. She is finishing up her final year as a print making major. After she graduates she wants to simply make art and possibly teach it. She is currently teaching a lower division art class for the first time which she finds challenging at times. Kiyomi was originally from Japan but now lives in Long Beach with her partner. She mentioned how her partner was also a print making major who inspires her often. Kiyomi and her parter have a garden from which she gets many natural materials for her artwork.
The series is called “Reminiscing Remnants”. It all began when Kiyomi suffered a personal loss. At this point in her life, she was going through such a hard time and her partner often made tea with her. She then wanted to share tea and special moments with certain people. So at that point, she decided to have tea parties. For her tea parties, Kiyomi made table cloths out of paper which she painted with beat or carrot juice. Then, she made hibiscus tea with lemon grass, chia leaves, sugar and other optional additives. The red color of the tea reminds her of the essence of life, blood. After the tea parties, Kiyomi collected the residue such as the stained table clothes and turned it into a series.
During her show, Kiyomi shared that special experience of conversations and tea with all of us who came into her gallery. The walls were plastered with different pieces of remnants while in the center of a room was a small table. It has a pink table cloth, dyed with beat juice, just like at her other parties. Kiyomi made the tea for us and poured several cups for her visitors to try. I was a lucky visitor who got to try her delicious tea. She mentioned she has gotten the recipe from our professor, Glenn Zuckman! How sweet. While we all tried the tea, we enjoyed getting to know Kiyomi a little better and had interesting conversations about life.
Something that I really took to heart was the way Kiyomi looked at life. She lives her life as it is art. She wants art to be integrated into life as she believes art is life as well as living. I found that so beautiful. I’m so glad I got to experience this art.
Here is a picture of Kiyomi Fukui in the presence of her gallery.
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