Kazuko Shiihashi is a Japanese artist working in the traditional Japanese nihonga style of painting. Having exhibited internationally over the past few decades, Shiihashi’s work is the perfect embodiment of Japanese modern art; the composition and subject matter, combined with the production techniques and sensitivity for Japanese art history create intriguing and visually complex works of art.
Shiihashi worked for several years on Kimono designs, employing the traditional Japanese dying technique of yuzen. It was then that she discovered natural pigments and the materials used in traditional Japanese painting. The shift from decorative art to fine art evolved naturally, evidence that in Japan, the distinction between ‘artist’ and ‘craftsmen’ is fluid. She accentuates the deep connection between nature and art, that is fundamental in the Japanese aesthetic.
Kazuko’s works are made of Japanese handmade paper, crushed, gilded and painted, then spread on identical wood panels (90 x 30 cm), which, when assembled, vary between lengths of 1.2 and 3 metres. This gives her work a deeply textural flavour, and her use of natural mineral pigments add to the jewel-like quality of her paintings.
Kazuko Shiihashi lives and works in Tokyo. She has held numerous solo exhibitions all over the world.