Explore the inner world of the pop art artist and the founder of SHISHIDOMIA, Sayuri, who is deeply influenced by Japanese and Latin culture.
- Can you tell us about your background? How does your cultural background impact you?
I’m an Asian-Latino raised in a mixed-race family, my mom is Colombian, and my dad is Japanese. My family background allowed me to experience the intricate beauty of both cultures. As a half-Japanese woman, I lived in Japan, one of the most homogeneous countries in the world. Until 3 years ago, I decided to move to the United States to start a new chapter in my life.
I kept searching for a sense of belonging for a long time. I have always questioned my nationality, ethnicity, and even physical appearance. These forced me to develop my own “place,” where I can be Japanese, Colombian, or whomever I want to be without worrying about other people’s opinions or expectations.
- Which artists are you most influenced by?
In order of importance, I would say Fujiko Fujio and Tezuka Osamu for manga and anime, Katsushika Hokusai and Ito Jakuchu for traditional drawing, and JR for photography and composition.
- How is your personality reflected in your work?
I think my personality is not reflected in my work but my inner self. I’m shy and do not always show my emotions and feelings. However, my artworks reveal my vision of the world – an energetic world full of colourful aspects.
I think my work is a window to my parallel world where we can all belong, where the beauty of the Japanese Edo period clashes with the power of present symbols of Western culture and modernity.
- Are there any particular reasons for creating Japanese Edo girls as the main characters in your artwork?
I created Japanese Edo girls as the main characters to represent the people during the Edo period while Japan had severely limited relations and trade between other foreign countries. So the Japanese Edo girls in my work portray the traditional Japanese characters experiencing the foreign influence on their life and culture while contacting the western world for the first time.
- What inspires you and which inspiration sources do you use?
Art and fashion are my biggest inspirations. Ever since I was a kid, I have loved art and fashion. So I love to feature my favourite fashion brands and fashion styles in my artwork. Also, as a textile designer, it is always fun to design clothing and textile patterns.
- What are the best things about being an artist?
I can do what I love and wake up every day with a sense of purpose. I also think that my artworks showcase the possibility of a different reality, where being different is ok. We are all beautiful in our way. It’s all about your willingness to see.
- How do photography and other art forms work together and influence each other?
Photography allows us to cherish our past, elevate our present, and dream about our future. As an artist, photography allows me to transport my reality to my imaginary world and express my inner self.
Sayuri is a Japanese artist with strong Latin American roots. Her childhood swayed within the beauty and richness of the Japanese and Colombian cultures; a mixture of flavors and colors that awoke a true passion for art and its power to convey deep social and personal feelings. This effervescent drive led to her enrollment at Tokyo Metropolitan Senior High School of Fine Arts, culminating in her undergraduate studies at the Faculty of Textile Art & Design at Tama Art University in Tokyo, Japan. Shortly after graduation, Sayuri moved to the US to pursue a career as a pop art artist and textile designer.
Please visit https://shishidomia.com/ for Sayuri’s updates and her work.