• 61°

Japanese-born artist’s work on display at OUS

From Aug. 28 to Sept. 25 the artwork of Japanese artist Miyuki Akai Cook will be displayed at the Ohio University Southern art gallery.

Born and raised in Japan, Cook said she has enjoyed drawing, painting and paper cutting as long as she can remember. Then, her mother introduced sewing, knitting and crocheting.

Cook decided to pursue art as her career and attended Seian Woman’s college in Kyoto, Japan, for a year to study textiles, which was the first time she dyed fabric. She later earned bachelor’s degree in fine arts in interior design from Osaka University of Arts in Japan.

In 2000 she came to America to explore a different culture. It was while studying at the University of North Texas she re-discovered an interest in textile. In 2006 she received her master’s degree in fiber and artisanry from University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth. She has been passionate for education and currently teaches at Marshall University.

“My work focuses on balance and dilemma caught between human society with all mechanical development and human as a part of nature,” Cook said. “I often use disposable items and trash with traditional materials and techniques to express today’s human society.”

Her visual inspiration and aesthetic are often from Japanese heritage. She calls herself a “maker” because her curious and adventurous personality let her to use various techniques and materials for different purposes. As a mother and educator, she is concerned about the young generation. In her artwork she expresses our coexistence and dilemma caught between human society and nature’s gift of life.

“Technology must coexist with our only land, earth, since we will never go back to ancient lifestyle,” she said. “I am not blaming anyone, but I rather present the facts and problems for awareness.”

Her artwork has been exhibited nationally and published in two books: Stitched Jewels and Fiberarts Design Book 7. In June of 2014, she will have a solo exhibition at the Gallery MARONIE in Kyoto.

More about cook is available at www.miyukiakaicook.com and at www.facebook.com/MiyukiAkaiCookArtist.

A reception will take place at the gallery, located in the Dingus Technology Center, 1804 Liberty Avenue in Ironton from 6-7 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 4.