While walking around the student art gallery this past Thursday in Art 110, I saw some interesting art displayed inside the galleries, yet the art of artist Shihori Nakayama that decorated the walls of the Dennis W. Dutzi Gallery caught my attention. If one entered the Dutzi gallery and observed Shihori’s art, one would agree that the fine detail and use of color in her artwork are amazing and attractive to the eye. Shihori’s art exhibition was entitled “Recapturing the Moment,” which is appropriate since she recaptures the experiences and emotions she has lived through as she creates her printmaking art and ink drawings by using her personal photographs as templates. Shihori uses her own photographs as templates for her art, meaning that she does not recreate them fully; she may recreate the people in a photograph but change the background or add somethings to her drawings that are not present in her pictures. As a result of this, her drawings contain realistic parts to it yet surreal aspects to them as well, such as the drawing to the right which depicts people important to Shihori’s life yet the face of a dog with a tree above its head and people under the tree.
As one can see, Shihori’s art contains amazing detail, and because of such fine detail, I believed that the drawings took a long time to create. Upon asking the artist how long her art took to make, she replied that she was unsure how long a single drawing took to create since she works on more than one drawing simultaneously. It took about four months, however, to create all of the art displayed in the artist’s art exhibition. Something that I found interesting was that Shihori used coffee in her printmaking art as well as in her drawings in order to make the colors appear lighter; that is something that I have never heard of before but the results looked nice. Just like the ink and pen drawings, the printmaking art had a lot of detail as well, and what I learned about Shihori’s prints was that she first screen prints and then draws on top of it. It did not matter whether her art was done in ink or in print, the results were amazing and although they flowed from realistic to surreal aspects, her art flowed smoothly.
Art for many is a form of relaxation, and to others, it is a form of expression and how one communicates to others; the latter is what art is to Shihori, for it is through her art that she tells the world her experiences. Shihori was born in Japan and she will be receiving her MA in illustration. The artist has always been an artistic person and she hopes to create her own products in the future featuring her art, such as books or shirts, creating her own children’s book being her dream; what an awesome children’s book that would be! Sharing her art is a major reason as to why the artist draws, so it is no wonder that she would love to share her art through books. Shihori’s art is unique, and what inspired some of her art were children’s books of “search and find”, probably books such as “I Spy,” books that I loved to look at when I was a child. It was a pleasure entering the Dutzi Gallery and having the opportunity to see the artist’s art as well as speaking to her about it. Shihori has a great talent and I am sure that with it she will make her dream a reality. I wish Shihori nothing but success in her future.