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Izumi Ueda Yuu

Thirst Izumi Ueda Yuu 1 December 2010 - 15 January 2011 Muzium & Galeri Tuanku Fauziah, Universiti Sains Malaysia

Pengarah Projek & Penyunting / Project Director & Editor Hasnul Jamal Saidon Penyumbang Esei / Essay Contributors Hasnul Jamal Saidon & Liew Ting Chuang

Tel: 04 6533888 ext-3261/2137/4789/4788/4786/3294 Fax: 04 6563531/6535060 Email: dir_muzium@notes.usm.my Website: www.mgtf.usm.my www.mgtfusmpenang.blogspot.com www.tagged.com/mgtfusm www.facebook.com/mgtfusm www.twitter.com/mgtf www.youtube.com/mgtfusm

Konsep Rekabentuk / Design Concept Izumi Ueda Yuu, Afzanizam Mohd Ali & Liew Ting Chuang Pembaca Pruf / Proofreader M. Hanif Pembantu Kuratorial / Curatorial Assistants Mohd Firdaus Khairuddin, Aizuan Azmi, Nur Hafizah Ab. Aziz, Nor Mohammad Abd. Rahim Pembantu Teknikal / Technical Assistants Shamsul Ikhmal Mansori, Noordin Ban, Rosli Hamzah, Muhammad Husni Abd. Latiff, Mohamad Yazdi Yaacop, Izrul Abd. Aziz, Noor Rashid Shabidi Pembantu Penerbitan / Publication Assistants Nor Laila Abd. Rozak@Razak, Safinawati Samsudin Pembantu Kewangan / Financial Assistant Rohaya Sanapi Promosi & Publisiti / Promotion & Publicity Nurul Ashikin Shuib, Azizi Yahya, Adlan Redzuan, Salim Ibrahim Sokongan Umum / General Supports Radhiyah Abu Bakar, Salmiah Mohamad, Faridah Hashim, Ravi Vansamy Pameran Atas Talian / Online Exhibition http://mgtf.usm.my/exhibit/php

Ueda Yuu, Izumi Thirst / Izumi Ueda Yuu. ISBN 978-967-10008-5-4 1. Ueda Yuu, Izumi Japan--Exhibitions. I. Ueda Yuu, Izumi,. II. Universiti Sains Malaysia. Muzium & Galeri Tuanku Fauziah. I. Judul. 709.2 Š2010 Izumi Yuu and Muzium & Galeri Tuanku Fauziah, Universiti Sains Malaysia. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced except for the purpose of research, criticism and review, without prior permission from the artist and publisher.


• Detail of Market (2010)

Izumi Ueda Yuu


Quote by Jack Rasmussen


Encountering Izumi’s Objects of Meditation


Hasnul Jamal Saidon

Thirst by Izumi Ueda Yuu


Prelude Selected artworks from 1990 - 2009 Even Flow Black Book Science of Eugenics Arms Rust Never Sleeps Skins One Hundred Shoes








Liew Ting Chuang


“Izumi Ueda Yuu transforms the material of her personal world into objects and situations that, in turn, transform our hearts and minds.� Jack Rasmussen, Director and Curator American University Museum Washington, DC


“I am taking an attitude of directness and unselfconsciousness in making my work. My connection with everyday life, through the choice of the materials I use and the processes of working with them give me the space to be innovative and experimental. The result, I hope, is that the work looks as if anybody could have made it. At the same time, they float above the ground.�

Izumi Ueda Yuu November, 2010


Thirst, mixed media, variable dimension, 2010.


Encountering Izumi’s Objects of Meditation

• Paul and Izumi sitting at the MGTF fine art gallery.

1. Knowing Izumi

I came to know Izumi through her husband, Paul Kohl. I met

Paul in Singapore upon a suggestion by his colleagues, with the intention of bringing his photographic works to Penang. Both Paul and Izumi are currently based in Singapore. Last year in 2009, I helped to organise Paul’s solo exhibition of digital photographic prints on Japanese hand-made paper at the Muzium & Galeri Tuanku Fauziah (MGTF), Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM). The exhibition, entitled “Two Fish, Out of Water” brought Paul and Izumi to Penang to install the exhibition as well as to conduct a mini lecture and workshop with USM’s students.


Initially, I didn’t know that Izumi was also

trained as a visual artist. Only after a polite request from Izumi to show me her portfolio that I came to know her as an actively practicing visual artist who has exhibited in the USA and Japan as well as other countries. I went through Izumi’s portfolio and was impressed, if not humbled.

Her works are lessons in meditation

upon simple things in life, without the excessive needs for stifling grandeur or mighty scheme that are customarily used to ‘position’ contemporary artworks today. Perhaps, they reflect Izumi herself – humble, simple, polite, petite and subtle, but not without a pinch. I could also sense a strong and firm character marked by contemplative eyes for details and miniscule elements that most of us would normally miss in our daily life.

Together with one of my graduate students

T.C. Liew, we embarked upon a field trip around Penang. Throughout the trip, I had the pleasure of witnessing how Izumi absorbed objects that we normally take for granted in life.

• Detail of Step (2010)


Through her, objects are not merely three

deterministic process based on linear logic of

dimensional entity defined by our common notion of

cause and effect. It has to be shifted into quantum

physical space. Through her, objects are emotional,

description based on ‘probabilities’. This refers to

mental and spiritual phenomenon entangled in

indeterminism of quantum condition in which all

multiple and fluid dimensions. They are meant to be

possibilities are entangled until they are perceived.

contemplated and meditated upon. They are meant

Such shift places the ‘observer’ or ‘perceiver’ at the

to be unveiled. Penang, with it’s unpretentious

center of the phenomenal world. Such shift may also

(if not chaotic) mix of ironies, contradictions

imply a strong impact to the concept of macro-micro

and paradoxes, seemed to encapsulate Izumi’s

relationship in the western tradition, initially based

internal vibes – a holistic mix of female intuition

on a highly mechanical and compartmentalised view

and clear thinking. Izumi’s demeanour and works

of the world we live in. Reality based on modern

reminded me of the mantra of ‘sustainability’ that is

sciences is basically mechanistic, looking at life in

consistently championed by USM.

parts with no connection or shared link between

them. It has the tendency to reduce life to things,

The result of Izumi’s encounter with USM

and Penang is partly presented in “Thirst”, her first

spiritual to material, humans to machine and a

solo in Malaysia. Muzium & Galeri Tuanku Fauziah,

reservoir into a sewage tank. Such culture operates

USM is certainly honoured to host her.

within a frozen hierarchical system structured around the dichotomy between a controller and the

2. Meditating Beyond Objects

controlled. Such artificial system widens chasm between individual and the society, private and

In unveiling objects, the notion of

‘perception’ itself has to be freed from a


public, an observer and the observed. In fact, it may shatter humans into unconnected and

unsynchronised pieces of mind, body and soul.

On the other hand, quantum reality in the

micro world is entangled with the macro world. In other words, a small unit (micro) does not have any meaning except in its relation to a bigger unit (macro). It is also interesting to meditate upon how we employ the term ‘me’ or ‘I’ despite the fact that our body contains 100 trillion cells, each containing protein molecules in trillions as well. Each body has 200 bones, 500 muscles, billions of fibers for muscles, kilometers of nerve fibers to allow us to coordinate the ‘I’. Our brain has a million cells, each is more powerful than a personal computer (MaeWan Ho, 2003).

• Detail of No Time To Kill (1992-2010)


A sustainable ecosystem, including human

beings, is not consisted of parts that compete with each other, or with Nature. It contains organism from various species and steered as a whole by symbiotic relationship that is also plural and complimentary, cutting across all layers, running across all types of universes, from local to global, from slowest to fastest (speed of light), from things seen to things unseen. The whole network in an ecosystem will change or make adjustment based on ever-changing needs or circumstances, with the role of control shifting between different parts or units. Everything relies on electromagnetic vibration that is presence in everything. A synchronised state is like a musical rhythm or a beautiful jazz in which each musician is free to improvise on her own, ever-changing and individually unique, but is simultaneously synchronised with the tempo and rhythm of the whole (Mae-Wan Ho, 2003). This is referred to as being immersed in a quantum coherence or an overwhelming feeling • Detail of Thirst (2010)


of oneness. Such concept is closer to eastern

metaphysical traditions based on the unity of parts

our own form of quantum synchrony and blissful

and harmonious symphony of the universe. The


universe is read as a unity of the whole, a result of inter-communication between all the parts across all range of space and time. It is continuous, everchanging, synchronised, free and interdependence at the same time.

In perceiving beyond objects, we are not

merely what we see through our naked eyes. We are a part of an interconnected quantum

Hasnul J Saidon Director Muzium & Galeri Tuanku Fauziah (MGTF) Universiti Sains Malaysia December 2010

entity, sustained by everything in a unified and synchronised (or not, depending on our free will) whole. As one synchronises her frequencies with the symphony of the whole, driven by true and


divine love, one is encapsulated by a blissful symbiosis, free of selfishness, hatred, envy and never-ending vicious rivalry.

In engaging with Izumi’s artworks, I hope

that we will be able to meditate beyond her carefully chosen objects. I also hope that we may be able

1. Mae-Wan Ho. (2003). Living with the Fuild Genome, Penang : Institute of Science in Society & Third World Network. 2. Hasnul J Saidon. (2005). “Takung - The Container and The Contained”. In Takung. Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia: National Art Gallery of Malaysia and Yayasan Kesenian Perak.

to unveil the cloaks of our mind and emotion. Who knows, we may perhaps be encapsulated by



• Detail of Thirst (2010)

Thirst: by Izumi Ueda Yuu 1. Izumi that I knew

I met Izumi in 2009, when Paul Kohl, her husband, was putting

up his photography works at the Muzium & Galeri Tuanku Fauziah, USM. I was the student assistant for Paul’s solo exhibition, entitled Two Fish, Out of Water (2009)1. After completing the installation process, we went for a walk in Georgetown for the rest of the day. Paul enjoyed taking photos of the local scenery and Izumi was attracted by found “junks” and collectable items from the heritage city. We ventured down streets and lanes, walked under the shade of heritage buildings, and tasted different kinds of local food. She was astonished by Chulia Street hardware stores, where traders run their businesses on both sides of the street. Izumi loves flea markets, especially the one at Sungei Road, Singapore. Georgetown is another heaven for Izumi.

Izumi has a unique collecting habit. We visited the flea market

at Armenian Street, which was once settled by Armenian merchants _____________________ 1. Two Fish Out of Water by Paul Kohl, on 18 January 2009, at Muzium & Galeri Tuanku Fauziah, USM. Retrieved on 26 November 2010, URL: http://www.mgtf.usm.my/exhibitdetails.php?exhibitid=50


in the 19th century. She found an antique door

power of buying; mystified by commodity fetishism”

handle, then put it to my chest and said, it is the

(Spickard, 2001), Izumi’s hollow casts remind the

key to open up my heart. She bought a Y-shaped

public of the “thirsty” nature of buying.

hook, which became part of her installation entitled Market (2010). Izumi casted her collectable “junks” which include a medium format camera, spoons, utensils and containers using aluminium foil. Silver, shiny foils depicted the over century old Industrial Age, which is currently into its transition. The hollow casts have low durability, reminding us that metal goods are on “the verge of extinction”. It might have provided a sense of nostalgia to Izumi, who was born as a part of Baby Boomers generation. (Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia, 2010) On a personal level, the hollow casts indicate her “thirst” or sense of fetish for collecting second hand items.

From an economic perspective, it is an

ironic commentary about the materialistic attitude of the society. Karl Marx’s critique of capitalism comments, that most economists objectify relationships between things (commodities and money). Therefore, a capitalist society ritualises the


• Detail of Market (2010)

2. Izumi loves “Fish-balls soup”, Kway Teow Th’ng

Izumi tasted Penang’s famous Kway Teow

Th’ng (noodle soup), which was served with fishballs, pork slices and board noodles. Izumi liked the freshness of fish-balls and the delicious taste of the soup, therefore she called it “Fish-balls soup”.

Izumi has a special way of observing

and interpreting. It has led her into applying customisation practices in her works. Izumi

• Details of Thirst Objects (2010)

demonstrates her collecting habits in many ways. Through photography, Izumi collects inspirations and captures unique perspectives. Both practices remind me of Piyadasa’s and Suleiman Esa’s Mystical Concept of Time and Event manifesto (Piyadasa & Esa, 1974). It refers to the artists’ behaviourist practices that were treated as a form of meditation for those who believe in Zen practices. Piya and Suleiman referred to their work as an “event”.


Blue Baskets (2010) is a series of 70

drawings. In this series, Izumi made her own pigments using tree sap and then drew gestural forms of baskets on pieces of rice paper. The drawings are arranged in a U-shape on the wall, with one piece left out from the arrangement. The single piece is placed on top of a breach in the composition; the simulacra of “fill-in-the-gap”. Formalistically, the composition depicts the surface concept of “Thirst”.

On a deeper level, Blue Baskets depicts

neither the metaphorical concept of sadness nor emptiness. It relates to the saying “Embrace Tiger; Return to Mountain as a movement in Yang style traditional Tai Chi. When I was practicing this movement, I just needed to empty my mind and let my body flow.” (Izumi, 2010)

The concept of “Thirst” is defined through

the installation process. Izumi struggled when she was installing Blue Baskets. Izumi failed to realise • Detail of Blue Baskets (2010)


her original design, which led her to feeling “blue”

明宪 , 2008). Izumi encouraged me and said, “You

and got “drunk” by the problem2. It was already in

are there, just do it.” True enough, after a few

the evening when Izumi left. The next morning,

months, I was awarded the IMCAS 2009 Artist-

Izumi came with the idea of a U-shaped installation.

In-Residence programme. And now Izumi’s solo

Izumi was “thirsty” for a solution the day before and

exhibition is being opened to the public.

in order to do so, she embraced the “tiger” and freed

her mind and flowed with the idea. She was then

before at the National Institute of Education,

able to solve the problem.

Singapore. Six pieces of Skins are from the

Skins (2009-2010), was installed once

original Singapore version while the rest 12 pieces 3. Izumi said “You are there”

are new works, made and found in 2010 for this show. This series has allowed Izumi to explore

Izumi, Paul and I went to Macalister Road,

the concept of skin, about her grandmother’s and

which Penangites call the “centre spot” of the

mother’s snakeskin3 belief, her western aesthetic

city. The street is known as the centre for hawker

judgement, her son’s scratched knee incident and

food. We had our dinner there. After a long day of

her relationship with her late father. It shows her

walking, it was a time for us to sit down and chat.

“thirst” for wisdom in the concept of skins. Her

We shared our future plans since that was about a week from the Lunar New Year. We believe in the Law of Attraction; whatever we have manifested at this moment will eventually get the “respond” on the next second or many years after (Rhonda Byrne, 谢

_____________________ 2. In the English language, blue often represents the human emotion of sadness, e.g. “He was feeling blue”. In German, on the other hand, to be “blue” (blausein) is to be drunk.Blue. (2010, November 13). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 19:23, November 25, 2010, from http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index. php?title=Blue&oldid=396556704 3. My mother and my grandmother believed that, if you keep a snakeskin in your wallet, money will flow in endlessly. I could never understand why they could believe such a story since they always had snake skins in their wallets but they never had enough money. Retrieved from Izumi Ueda Yuu.com, 26 November 2010. URL: http://www. izumiuyuu.com/skins/index.html


mother and grandmother believed and practiced the

4. Izumi manifests herself as “spring water in a

idea that a piece of a snakeskin in wallets brings

green paddy field”

prosperity to the family. She viewed the snakeskin as an object that symbolises a superstition. The

relationship between Izumi and her late father

chat and I asked her about her Japanese name.

can be conceptually depicted as “skin” in terms of

She replied, 植田 泉 (planting paddy field & spring

attachment and engagement. Izumi also believes

water). The literal meaning of the phase is “spring

that the skin gives protection to what is inside.

water in a green paddy field”. Izumi mentioned

“You are there” is Izumi’s catchphrase as she

that her name is a humble one, “the rice paddy

unconsciously pursues her “thirst”.

is shallow.”5 I have a different view of her name,

A few days ago, we chatted through gmail 4

though. Spring water is essential for irrigation in a paddy field. It is necessary for a cultivation of rice for a harvest season. It is a metaphor for Izumi as being central to a society. Izumi’s artworks are channels to share her thought and philosophies on life.

Thirst (2010), Thirst Objects (2010), Blue

Baskets (2010) and Market (2010) show a sequence of interpretations. They depict the transitions of Izumi’s life; formalistically they synchronise the _____________________ 4. gmail chat on 24 November 2010, 11.45pm with Izumi Ueda Yuu 5. Facebook’s message dated 28 November 2010, 9.29am from Izumi Ueda Yuu.

• Detail of Thirst Objects (2010)


contents of the showcase. Izumi treats the gallery space as a part of her artworks as well. Therefore, she divides it into 4 zones. Thirst & Thirst Objects (2010) was installed in Zone 1, which suggests varied definitions of the concept of “thirst”.

• Detail of Thirst Objects (2010)



Thirst Objects, mixed media, variable dimension, 2010.





• Details of Thirst Objects (2010)



No Time To Kill (1992 - 2010) was installed in Zone

2. There are ongoing works since the early 1990’s during her residence in the United States. It was the beginning of Iraq war, with the media triggering her to produce works under similar theme until today. They reflect the ugly side of human civilisation; war is created to serve narrow economic and political domination. A camouflage that is always associated with “war” was adapted by Izumi. She manipulates the patterns to change the physical quality of everyday objects to translate the concept of “thirst”. Zone 1 and 2 archive her collecting efforts while simultaneously depict her “thirst” for knowledge.

• Detail of No Time To Kill (1992-2010)

“This is ongoing work. Some of the painted objects were made in the U.S. in the early ‘90’s at the beginning of the first Iraq War. Reality has forced me to keep up with this work until now.” - Izumi



No Time To Kill, everday objects altered by paint, plaster casts, graphite, fabric, flowers and teabags, variable dimension, 2010.


• Detail of No Time To Kill (1992-2010) 36


• Details of No Time To Kill (1992-2010) 38


• Detail of No Time To Kill (1992-2010) 40

“Last summer in Europe was unusually hot. The local folks said it never happened before. It’s been happening for the last several years all over the world. It’s not like it used to be; the weather, the technology, family life, ongoing wars…Yet, life wants to continue. These works are the result of my willingness to be perseverant and enthusiastic as a human through my art.” - Izumi


Blue Baskets (2010) was installed in

Zone 3. This area showcases her behaviourist inclination in art making. Water Ring (2010) and Hand Drawing With The Right Side Of The Brain (2010) were installed in the same zone as well. The effort of making embroidery and gestural drawings reflect her aggressive nature. It shows her “thirst” for research. Through practice, Izumi learns patience and acceptance. The engagement of art making has led her into adventures of higher self consciousness. • Detail of Water Ring (2010)


Water Ring, embroidery on hand sawn net, 241cm x 205 cm, 2010. 43


Hand Drawing With The Right Side Of The Brain, drawing on magazine papers, 45cm x 45cm, 2010.

• Detail of Hand Drawing With The Right Side Of The Brain (2010) 45


Blue Basket, pigment with tree sap on rice (kozo) paper, 89.5cm x 75.5cm, 2010.


Zone 4 showcases Izumi’s “thirst” for

belonging, the roots of her existence. It is different compared to other zones. Through the dark and moody light setting, it is a gate to the sublime. It unveils Izumi’s personality and characteristics through her touches, selection of materials, method & techniques, the use of spaces and expression.


“I can still trace my background being

‘Japanese’ through the touches of my

works, even though I have been in the

United States and Singapore for the

last two decades,”- Izumi.

Step (shadow), paper, 79cm x 60cm, 2010.


Installation views show different perspective of Step (2010). 50

Step, bottle caps, cloth & paper, 92cm x 59cm, 2010.



Market, heavy aluminium foil, variable dimension, 2010.

Thirst is a solo exhibition produced by Izumi

Ueda Yuu at the Muzium & Galeri Tuanku Fauziah, USM. The show contains 7 series of her installation works, which are a compressed and reflective view of her life throughout the decades. Liew Ting Chuang Postgraduate student B308 MA studio, Universiti Sains Malaysia. Nov 2010.

References 1. Redza Piyadasa & Suleiman Esa. (1974). “The Mystical Concept of Time and Event”. In Suleiman Esa & Redza Piyadasa, Towards A Mystical Reality - A documentation of jointly initiated experiences (p. 19). 2. Rhonda Byrne, 谢明宪 . (2008). The Secret 秘密 (translated version). Beijing: China City Press 中国城市出版社. 3. Spickard, Jim. (2001, September). Social Theory Pages. Retrieved November 25, 2010, from Outline of Marx’s “The fetishism of commodities”: http://newton.uor.edu/FacultyFolder/ Spickard/SocialTheory/commodity_fetishism.htm 4. Wikipedia, (2010, November 23). Generation: Wikipedia Retrieved November 25, 2010, from Wikipedia: http:// en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Generation 5. Yuu, Izumi Ueda (2010, February). Retrieved November 26, 2010, from Izumi Ueda Yuu: http://www.izumiuyuu.com/ statement.html


• Installation views at zone 4, the center of the showcase.



• Detail of Water Ring (2010) 56

Prelude Selected artworks from 1990 - 2009

reference: www.izumiuyuu.com


“This is my first sculpture. The mold were made from toy latex animal beaks and milk bottle.� - Izumi


Even Flow, cast plaster and paint, 135 x 75 x 8cm, 1990, TUTTLE Gallery Show/MD/USA. 59

“In November 1991, I made an object which I

called “Black Book” right after reading a small article in a local newspaper which told of the Public Libraries in Baltimore being threatened with the closure of seven of their branches.

Since I was in love with the American library

system, I proposed an installation to be executed in front of the main library in downtown Baltimore. It was done with the enthusiastic approval of the community. The installation took place in the front of the library doors, from the entrance to the street using 100 black books. People passing by, going into and coming out of the library had to slow down and become part of in the installation. On the other side of the street people were waiting in a line of the Soup Kitchen at a church and they crossed the street to precipitate in the installation.

This work is about the continued viability of

public libraries, in particular and about how an artist can participate in a community.” - Izumi


• Photographs show the participation of public.

Black Book, recycle books, string and acrylic house paint, variable dimension, 1991, site specific installation at Enoch Pratt Public Library, Baltimore, USA. 61

“The book Science of Eugenics was first

published in 1904 and by 1922, 250,000 copies had already been printed. The book talks about the improvement of ‘the human race’ by methods of selective sex and reproduction.”

Science of Eugenics, Old photographs of American and Japanese families, hand-sewn recycled fabric, copper rings, cast plaster, book (Science of Eugenics) and fresh apples, variable dimension, 1993, The Installation Space, School 33 Art Center, Baltimore, USA. 62

“ I thought about people like my grandmother

in Japan who adopted a child, my father, just before the First World War. He was not healthy and it was not an easy time to raise this child whose health continued to fail almost until the outbreak of the Second World War. Under the unconditional love of my grandparents, my father recovered and lived to be 95 years old.�


“ My mother-in-law came to my mind also. She had to watch her newly married husband leave to fight the Japanese in the Pacific in the Second World War. She delivered a child while her husband fought.�


“Despite adverse

circumstances, life continues as the uncontrollably fragrant natural power of apples in their honeymoon bed changing in time in the air of the room where we find ourselves surrounded by the invisibility of the life force.� 65

Arms Materials: a quilt made of parachute, hospital & home linens, tea bags, dry leaf, photography and images of body parts transferred on plaster, book pages and copper rings, variable dimension, 1994, Mixed Media Installation, Fine Art gallery, Maryland University (UMBC)/USA


“It was near the end of ’91 when I noticed the tea bags for the first time. The TV in my living room had been on for days. It sent us the news of how America was successfully attacking Iraq. I felt endless thirst. My kitchen sink was soon filled with used tea bags. They started to form a mountain. When they had thoroughly dried, they looked wounded, lifeless. Those tea bags in my kitchen sink reminded me of the dead bodies in that foreign land.”


“In my living room the TV continued its display of current war disasters. There is no blood and no screams. These scenes make me remember a different association I had with tea. In Asia people believe tea cleanses things. My grandmother used to clean the house with recycled tea leaves. She would spread wet tea leaves on the tatami throughout the house and then sweep them up. Especially on winter mornings, I remember watching the steam rising from the warm tea leaves and smell of tea filling the whole house while they sucked up all the dirt and dust from the air and the floor. This installation grew out of those memories.�




Rust Never Sleeps Materials: Kozo, sea water and pigment A Site-specific Installation, 2005, Uno Harbor in Southwestern Japan

“This site was a railroad/ferry terminal that had been abandoned since the late 90’s. The railroad/ferry was called Uko-renrakusen and was only the connection between the mainland and the Island of Shikoku for the previous century. The train had brought hardware from the mainland to exchange fish and citrus from Shikoku Island. In 1990 a new bridge was build and the town, which had been a vital commercial center, faded. The platform was now used by weekend fisherman as a slab for gutting their catch.”


“I wanted to offer yellow rings made out of handmade paper constructed directly on the concrete platform using seawater and Japanese raw paper material, called “Kozo”, which came from Shikoku Island. The color is yellow from the sun, the moon and citrus, also the hidden power to heal our souls.”


“My mother and my grandmother believed that, if you kept a snakeskin in your wallet, money would flow in endlessly. I could never understand why they could believe such a story since they always had snake skins in their wallets but they never had enough money. The only explanation I can think of is that they enjoyed having the beauty of the snakeskin in their wallets. Also the mysterious knowledge that the snake had shed its skin and gone somewhere might have represented freedom to them.�


Skins Mixed media Installation, 2009, National Institute of Education/Singapore


“One day, my son showed me his

His pain is still a vivid memory. And,

scratched knee. It was a half-day old

when scabs dry, they itch so much you

scab, getting brownish but you could still

have to scratch them, which starts them

see the pinkish-red flesh underneath the

bleeding again. They crack and won’t

half dried crust. He cried when he had to

heal for a long time.”

sit in the hot bath. 74


“Skin protects what’s inside. It separates inside from out. It vibrates in the light. Sometimes it disguises what’s inside. Still the surface is the expression of the inside. I want to tell stories about what is on the other side of the skin so your eyes can see. The difficulty is I must use the surface and it’s only our mind that can see beneath. This exhibition explores those things inside my skin and is dedicated to my father who lived until he was ninety-five years old.”

Sand work by Lawrence Abrahamson



One hundred Shoes Materials: kozo and water, pigment, bees wax Four Installations 2009, Art gallery, National Institute of Education/Singapore 2007, Kurashiki Art Museum/Japan, 2006, Gallery CASO/Osaka, 2006, On a Roof Top at Futago/Okayama


“I enjoy making paper shoes from raw pulp. This versatile material is sensitive to the temperature and the humidity of the day of making and it reflects the maker’s mood like a mirror. The shoes form site-specific installations in different places.� 79

Biography: Izumi Ueda Yuu Present Address: Contact No.: Website: E-mail:

9A Nanyang View, Singapore 639623 65 96549305 www.izumiuyuu.com IzumiUeda@ntu.edu.sg izumi.yuu@gmail.com

Teaching & Workshop 2010 Nanyang Technological University, School of Art Design & Media/Singapore 2003 KAWASAKI Medical Welfare University/Okayama/Japan Teaching ‘Expressive Art’ for Psychology Students 2001-03 AZUSA Elderly People’s Recovery Center/ Kobe/Japan 2001-03 POAI Elder People’s Home/Kobe/Japan 2001-03 MARUTA Elder People’s Group/Kobe/Japan 1992-94 Park School Junior High& High School Workshops/MD/USA 1991-92 Baltimore Public School 66 Workshop/MD/USA Professional Experience 1997-07 Working as an Exhibiting Artist/ Japan 1987-95 Working as an Exhibiting Artist/USA 1980-88 Freelance Graphic Designer/USA 1976-79 Freelance Photographic Stylist/Tokyo/Japan 1970-76 Graphic design Agency LAMAN/Tokyo/Japan Education 1995 B.F.A. Sculpture, Maryland Institute College of Art/USA 1982 Font Bonne College, Studied Painting/St. Louise/USA 1980-81 Washington University, Studied Drawing & Painting/USA 1970-72 KUWASAWA Design Institute/Tokyo/Japan Research & Study 2002 Expressive Art Therapy Workshop, Text by Natalie Rogers/Osaka/Japan 2001&02 Intensive Art Therapy Workshop GEIJYUTU-ZOKEI KENKYUJO/Nagasaki/Japan Takayuki Mitsushima Workshop, Kobe Village Center/Japan 2001 ‘Te de Miru Katachi’ Yohei Nishimura Workshop/Osaka 80

1996 2010 2006

Art Kunst Festival Tokyo’96 Art therapy Workshop/Tokyo Artist in Residence Hungarian Multicultural Center/ Budapest/ Hungary Awa Paper Mill Factory/Tokushima/Japan

Grants 2010 1995 1993 1992 1991

Hungarian Multicultural Center/ Budapest/ Hungary Maryland State Art Council Individual Artist Grant/USA Maryland State Art Council Individual Artist Grant/USA Baltimore City Art Council Individual Artist Grant/USA Baltimore City Art Council Individual Artist Grant/USA

Solo Exhibitions (Selected) 2010 University Sains Malaysia/Muzium & Galeri Tuanku Fauziah/Malaysia 2009 National Institute of Education, The Art Gallery/Singapore 2008 STREET Gallery/Kobe/Japan 1993 International Sculpture Center, Arnold & Porter galleries, Washington, D.C. /USA 1993 School 33 Art Center Installation Space, Baltimore/USA 1992 Galeries Francoise, Baltimore/USA 1991 Enoch Pratt Baltimore City Public Library, Baltimore/USA Group Exhibitions (Selected) 2010 ‘Original Prints 2010’ F1 Pits Building/Singapore 2010 ‘International Residency Artist Exhibition’ Duna Gallery Budapest/Hungary 2010 ‘Ocean’ Gallery Sans Quoi/Tamano/Japan 2010 ‘International Residency Artist Exhibition’ Jokai Club Hungarian Multicultural Center/ Budapest/ Hungary 2010 ’International TANNAN Art Festival’, International Travel Show TAKEFU City Hall/Fukui, KURAZO/Kyoto, 2009 ART SUN Exhibition , Kurashiki Art Museum/Okayama/Japan 2009, ’International TANNAN Art Festival’, International Travel 08 Show TAKEFU City Hall/Fukui, KURAZO/Kyoto, CASO/Osaka/Japan 2007 International Exhibition ‘Intimate Conversations: Artists & their Materials’ Kurashiki Art Museum/Okayama/Japan


2006 2005 2004 1998 1995 1994 1993 1992 82

ART SUN 10th Exhibition, Kurashiki Art Museum/Okayama Two Person Exhibition, Kurashiki Art Museum/ Okayama/Japan ‘Summer Battle ‘07’ USA-Japan Exchange Show’ Sans Quoi/ Tamano/Japan ’International TANNAN Art Festival’, International Travel Show, Takefu City Hall/Fukui, CASO /Osaka/Japan 50th Kurashiki Art Exhibition, Kurashiki Art Museum/Okayama ‘Peace Show’ Tenjinyama Art Plaza/Okayama/Japan ‘Austria-Kurashiki Contemporary Artist Joint Exhibition’, Kurashiki Art Museum/Okayama/Japan ‘International TANNAN Art Festival’,International Travel Show CASO/Osaka, Takefu City Hall/Fukui/Japan Awagami Factory: Two Person Show/Tokushima/Japan ‘Eros’, Art Space KURAGE/Osaka/Japan ‘Nature Show’ Kurashiki Art Museum/Okayama/Japan ART SUN 9th Exhibition, Kurashiki Art Museum, Okayama TAMANO Art Festival, Uno Harbor, Okayama ‘Peace Show’ Tenjinyama Art Plaza/Okayama/Japan ‘Kurashiki Expression’ SAKATU Park/Okayama/Japan ‘International TANNAN Art Festival’, International Travel Show CASO/Osaka, TAKEFU City Hall/Fukui ‘Printable Exhibition’, Gallery Paraiso/Osaka/Japan ’YUSHIN’, Gallery Miyasaka, Tokyo/Japan International Exhibition ‘Legacy HIROSHIMA’ Pier 1 Gallery/San Francisco/USA Arms ’A View from Baltimore to Washington’ University Maryland Fine Art Gallery/USA ‘Art Site 6’, Rockville Art Place/MD/USA ‘Gods and Saints’, Maryland Institute college of Art/USA ‘Secrets: Box and Unbound’, Maryland Art Place/USA ‘Maryland Hall for Creative Arts Show’ , Cardinal Gallery Maryland/USA ‘The Legacy Show’ Meyerhoff Gallery, Maryland Institute College of Art/Baltimore/USA ‘BAU House Year Show’, BAU House/Baltimore/USA ‘Maryland Survey’, Meyerhoff Gallery, Maryland Institute College of Art/Baltimore/USA ‘Artist for Choice’ Maryland Art Place/Baltimore/USA ‘Out of Imagination’ Maryland Art Place/Baltimore/USA

‘Down to the Roots’ Deleplane Visual Art center/ MD/USA BAU House Year Show, BAU House/Baltimore/USA 1990 TUTTLE Gallery Show/MD/USA 1974 Asahi News Paper Advertising Award 2nd Prize/ Asahi News Paper Building/Tokyo/Japan 1967&7 NIKA-TEN Juried Show, Tokyo Metropolitan Art Museum/Tokyo/Japan


Bibliography 2010 ‘Original Prints 2010’ Catalogue/Singapore 2010,09,08,07&06 The 18th~14th International Travel show TANNAN Art Festival Exhibition Catalogue/ Fukui/Kyoto/Osaka/Japan 2009 The 11th ART SUN Exhibition Catalogue, Kurashiki Art/Museum/Okayama/Japan 2008 ASAHI Newspaper ‘Ho, Ho, Ho’ Solo Exhibition, Street Gallery/Kobe/Japan 2007 FUKUI Newspaper article on The 15th International TANNAN Festival, Izumi Yuu Paper Work ‘Shoes’/Fukui/Japan 2007 Exhibition Catalogue & Symposium Japan-Vienna Contemporary Women’s Art Work: ART SUN, Kurashiki Museum/Okayama/Japan 2006 Sanyo Newspaper article on Izumi Yuu Paper Work ‘Traveling Dotty’ Austria-Japan Contemporary Artist Joint Exhibition/Kurashiki Museum/Japan 2006 Fukui NHK TV news Document, Izumi Yuu Paper Work ‘Ho’ Echizen Culture Center/Fukui/Japan 2005 Asahi Newspaper Article on Izumi Yuu Installation documentation, ’Rust Never Sleeps’ Tamano Art Exhibition/Japan 2005 ART BOX vol.11 IzumiYuu, http://shiokaze.main.jp/miuartbox/archive 1994 Washington Review Special issue ‘Art Sites 6’ Izumi Ueda’s Installation ‘Science of Eugenics’ P10-11 1994 Washington Post article ‘Art Site 6 at Rockville Art Place’ Linda Bills, John Ruppert, Jeff Spaulding and Izumi Ueda ‘In the Spirit of Nature’ Review by Mary McCoy 1994 The Exhibition Catalogue ‘A View from Baltimore to Washington’ Izumi Ueda’s Installation ‘ARMS’ Text by Osvaldo Mesa 1994 ART PAPERS Vol.18. No.6 P49 ‘A View from Baltimore to Washington’. Gillian Brown, Luis Flores, Stephen Lee, E. S. Sorrells-Adewale, Mary McCoy and Izumi Ueda by Katherine Carl 1994 Baltimore City Paper Art Review Gallery ‘Melting Pot’ Multi-Culti Installation Show at UMBC. Gillian Brown, Luis Flores, Stephen Lee, E.S.Sorrells-Adewale, Mary MoCoy and Izumi Ueda by Mike Giuliano 1993 Baltimore City Paper Are Review Gallery ‘Cracking the Cords’ School 33 Art Center, Carl Clark, H.Lee Hirsche, Ruth Pettis and an Installation ‘Science of Eugenics’ by Izumi Ueda, Review by Mike Giuliano 1992 Baltimore City paper ‘Crowded house’ 86artists and Izumi Ueda at BAU House, Reviewed by Carol Wood 1991 Baltimore newspaper ‘THE SUN’ article, Maryland-Ground-Level Protest at Baltimore Public Library ‘Black Books Installation’ by Izumi Ueda


Acknowledgements This exhibition became possible only with support of many people. First of all I would like to thank Hasnul J Saidon, Director Muzium & Galeri Tuanku Fauziah, Universiti Sains Malaysia for inviting me to do this exhibition and his inspiring words in the forward. My appreciation goes to the curator Afzanizam Mohd Ali for working on the catalog for many months and for his support in installing the exhibition. I must also mention the museum staff with who I had the joy of hanging the work. I would like to thank TC Liew, postgraduate Student at USM for his insightful and kind essay as well as his support in installing the work. I want to express my gratitude to Muzium & Galeri Tuanku Fauziah, Universiti Sains Malaysia, for the publication support. My appreciation goes to Jack Rasmussen, Director and Curator American University Museum Washington, DC for his kind words. I would like to thank Paul, my husband for introducing me to the beautiful space of the museum and his never ending support. Last, I would like to mention that this works would never be realized without my father Ei Ueda and my sons Issaku and Jiro Kohl. Thank you! Izumi Ueda Yuu 2010


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Thirst by Izumi Euda Yuu


Thirst by Izumi Euda Yuu

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