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Exhibition: Beyond Prayer — Paintings by Yuko Kasahara
April 6, 2017
An event every day that begins at 12:00 am, repeating until April 25, 2017
Organized by: CRS (Center for Remembering & Sharing)
CRS announces Beyond Prayer, an exhibition of abstract paintings by Yuko Kasahara of Japan. These paintings are like a record of Yuko’s prayers for the recovery of her mind following the shock of her parents’ separate deaths by suicide. Mainly using transparent watercolors and oil pastels, she attempts to express and dialog with her feelings of loss and separation, to move past them to reach something timeless and always shining in herself. The exhibition will be on view from April 6 – 25, 2017.
Message from Yuko Kasahara About This Exhibition
I think I always keep praying while I’m painting. Praying is to be honest, to affirm the expression that came from within myself, to change without fear, and to confirm what is important to me. This is an exhibition of work that I made while interacting with my heart in that way. These works may be like personal journals. But I feel like when I dive deeply and deeply into my heart, I can be reaching something like a sea of universality beyond individuals. I want to go there, I want to meet you there. While making works, I am praying like that.
For me, painting is the same as living, praying, and forgiving.
My parents’ respective suicides were very shocking events for me. Because of that, I lost my physical and mental condition. At that time, I could only express desperate feelings in a self-destructive way. After a long period of time when I could not cry because too painful, I could finally cry a little. I think that the next day I was able to make a drawing — one that could not be described as a proper picture — on a notebook with a ballpoint pen.
From that day, I drew, drew and continued drawing.
This process naturally came to represent abstractly the feelings coming out from inside of me that I could not express through language. I use fine drawing a lot. During those times I draw every single stroke with prayer.
At first, my purpose of painting was to just breathe through my emotions. But, I discovered the power to organize and change my thoughts through painting. When I start painting, I dare not plan what kind of work to make. As led by colors and shapes, I draw allowing my hand to be guided moment by moment. To not plan is, for me, to keep my mind open to the possibilities. I listen carefully, honestly, keep opening my mind. Finished works always take me to a place that I had not thought of before. I feel that I have been living in that way.
2016 Solo show (Kyoto, Japan)
2015 Group show (Kyoto, Japan)
2013 Start abstract painting with the current style
2002 Graduated from Osaka University of Arts
1977 Born in Osaka, Japan
I lost my father when I was 17 years old. I lost my mother when I was 35 years old. They both committed suicide.
I myself have a developmental disorder (ADHD).
I had a difficult time since childhood because of my family environment and because of my own character. Through studying A Course In Miracles painting, and with the support of the people around me, I deepened my connection to “Life,” “Universality” and “Real thing” that cannot be lost, and I regained the power to live.
My motto is “Various things happen in life, but all is OK.”