Artist Conversation 5

Artist: Kiyomi Fukui 
Exhibition: Apologetic Garden
Media: Demonstration/working art

Kiyomi Fukui Is a graduate of long beach state where she earned a Master’s of Fine Arts in printmaking. She is also a Graduate of La Sierra University where she earned a Bachelors of Fine Arts in Graphic Design. Most of the ideas she explores are about the people that participate in them and not the art itself. She varies between ideas but often repeats them multiple times through her process.

For her project, “Apologetic Garden,” Fukui had participantes place personal apologies into an envelope with different types of seeds. She then tended to the planted apologies and watched them grow. She had a photographer document their growth over several months.

In this piece she’s trying to explore her own inner guilt which she states on her website. In our conversation with her she spoke about the passing of her mother and how it affected her. She always wished she could send her the letters she wrote but never did send. By writing these apologies and planting them it’s a way to deal with this grief and guilt inside. It allows the participants to turn those personal apologies and make something out of them rather than them sitting inside rotting.

While the artwork Apologetic Garden didn’t quite resonate with me that deeply, the other conversation we had with her did. When she spoke about her Korean ancestry and feeling like an other type of person I could understand where she’s coming from. I am a quarter Korean and Caucasian but also half Hispanic, this tricultural mix is very difficult sometimes. It doesn’t feel like I belong in any of the three spaces but the issue is if I don’t belong in any of those cultures where should I go then. It makes me feel like an other because no matter which culture I try to embrace I’m always seen as an other there.

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