Artist Statement

Rima Fujita

My creative process is meditative, and since I find beauty in imperfection I draw inspiration from the Japanese aesthetics ofwabi-sabi, which recognizes beauty in imperfection and transience. As a descendant of the Japanese Last Samurai the fundamental essence of my creation is based on Buddhism and Bushido – the coexistence of self-discipline, commitment, serenity and compassion. However, raised in New York City my external life is utterly westernized. My work is the result of intertwined hybrid cultures, countless layers of monologues and emotions that manifest in my dreams and meditation process. All images I create are extracted from them. My dreams inspire me to create fantastical, ethereal and lyrical imagery.

I work on black surface,“Nibiiro,” the expression of a very dark grey from the Heian period (AD 794 to 1185) in Japan. I am inspired by a myth that if you mixed all colors that exist in Nirvana, the Buddhist land of Perfect Bliss, it would become “Nibiiro.” Painting on the black surface is to captivate what already exists there but hidden in dark. Even when working on canvas, I begin with a black surface. I utilize black not as negative space, but rather to denote contours and texture.

When I work on a white surface with watercolors I surrender, not to strive for perfection because I find perfection boring. Instead, I trust the flow of the water to go beyond. Letting go of my urge to control is an eternal challenge.

After all, art is a tool – a tool to contribute to society and humanity. It shines its best when it serves others. That is my fundamental belief and intention of why and what I create.

Rima Fujita, New York 2013

CV

Born in Tokyo, Japan and live and work in Southern California, New York and Tokyo.

Education:

Parsons School of Design, New York /B.F.A. in Illustration/Fine Arts
Riverdale Country School, New York

Selected Solo Exhibitions:

2016 Isetan Art Gallery, Tokyo, Japan
2016 Empowering The Extraordinary Dakinis, Tibet House Museum, New York
2015 Maya~Illusion & Magic, Isetan Art Gallery, Tokyo, Japan
2014 Green Mansions, Isetan Art Gallery, Tokyo, Japan
2013 Breath, Isetan Art Gallery, Tokyo, Japan
2012 Kirana, Isetan Art Gallery, Tokyo
2012 On The Back Of A Crane, Trace Foundation, New York
2012 Rose Gallery, Francis Parker, San Diego
2011 Save The Himalayas, Sundaram Tagore Gallery, Beverly Hills
2011 Gods And All Living Things, Isetan Art Gallery, Tokyo
2010 My Favorite Things, Isetan Art Gallery, Tokyo
2009 Happiness, Isetan Art Gallery, Tokyo
2008 Go Green, Isetan Art Gallery, Tokyo
2007 Prayer, Isetan Art Gallery, Tokyo
2006 Dreaming Tibet, Tibet House Museum, New York
2006 Nature, Isetan Art Gallery, Tokyo
2005 Metta, Isetan Art Gallery, Tokyo
2004 NoLita, Isetan Art Gallery, Tokyo
2003 Neo Japanesque, Isetan Art Gallery, Tokyo
2002 Travel, Isetan Art Gallery, Tokyo
2001 Rangzen, Isetan Art Gallery, Tokyo
2001 Tokyu Bunkamura Gallery, Tokyo
2000 Walter Wickizer Gallery, New York
2000 Blue Poppies, Isetan Art Gallery, Tokyo
1999 Chakra Alpha, Isetan Art Gallery, Tokyo
1998 Untitled, Isetan Art Gallery, Tokyo
1997 Game of Dreams, Isetan Art Gallery, Tokyo
1996 Untitled, Isetan Art Gallery, Tokyo
1995 Angels and Humans, Isetan Art Gallery, Tokyo
1994 Masculine, Feminine, Isetan Art Gallery, Tokyo
1993 Wordsworth, Tokyu Bunkamura Gallery, Tokyo
1993 Reverie, Isetan Art Gallery, Tokyo
1993 My Ghostly Lovers, Spark Art Gallery, Tokyo
2000-2010 Space R Gallery, Ashiya, Japan (annually)
1999-2009 Ishitaya Gallery, Kanazawa, Japan (annually)

Permanent Collection:

  • 2012 Rima Fujita Collections, Ushikuaiwa General Hospital, Japan
  • 1994 Murals, Coexistence, Agro Dome, Japan
  • 1989 Mural, Boats, Mars, New York

Selected Group Exhibition:

  • 2016 Art Stage Singapore, Singapore

  • 2016 Bridging The Realms, Tibet House Museum, New York

  • 2015 Transcending Tibet, Rogue Space Gallery, New York (Trace Foundation)
  • 2014 Weight of Happiness, Two-Women-Exhibition, Tibet House Museum, New York
  • 2013 Save the Himalayas, Sundaram Tagore Gallery, New York
  • 2013 Art For Tibet, Tibet House Museum, New York
  • 2012 Art For Tibet, Tibet House Museum, New York
  • 2000 Walter Wickizer Gallery, New York
  • 1987 Bruce Lurie Gallery, New York

Published visual books:

  • 2014 ReWa, Collaboration with the Central Tibetan Administration
  • 2011 Save the Himalayas, One Peace Books
    (Forewords by H.H.The Dalai Lama and Richard Gere)
  • 2005 TB AWARE (Foreword by Dr. James Watson)
  • 2005 Wonder Garden (Foreword by H.H.The Dalai Lama)
  • 2001 Wonder Talk (Forewords by H.H.The Dalai Lama)
  • 2001 The Little Black Box, K.K.Bestsellers
  • 1999 Simple Meditation, Kodansha

Awards and Honors:

  • 2015 Presenting “ReWa” and “Tibetan Identity” dummy book to H.H.The Dalai Lama
  • 2015 Keynote Speaker at the United Nations
  • 2011 Presenting “Save the Himalaya” and its original art to H.H. The Dalai Lama, India (official private audience)
  • 2009 Presenting the tenth anniversary report of Books for Children to H.H.The Dalai Lama, New York (official private audience)
  • 2006 Receiving a special recognition from the Nobel Peace Prize Laureates, H.H.The Dalai Lama, Archbishop Desmond Tutu and Betty Williams at the International Peace Summit, Japan
  • 2006 Excellence in Media, Angel Award, USA
  • 2001 Giorgio Armani Cultural Award, Italy/Japan
  • 2001 Special Recognition on Wonder Talk by The United Nations

Lectures and talks (selected):

  • 2014 United Nations
  • 2013 Rancho La Puerta, Mexico
  • 2012 San Diego Museum of Art, San Diego
  • 2012 Francis Parker School, San Diego
  • 2011 Tibet House, San Diego
  • 2011 Rubin Museum of Art, New York
  • 2010, 2011 The Hewitt School, New York
  • 2010 Japanese Professional Forum, New York
  • 2009 Jacques Marchais Museum of Art, New York
  • 2006 Tibet House Museum of Art, New York
  • 2001 Carinavi Student Forum, Tokyo
  • 2000 Parsons School of Design/KIDI, Japan
  • 1997 Vantan School of Design, Tokyo
  • 1993 to 2013 Isetan Art Gallery, Tokyo

Selected clients:

Chanel, Cartier, WWF, Asia Society Museum, Rubin Museum of Art, ABC Carpet & Homes, Shiseido, Tibet House Museum, Trace Foundation, Jacques Marchais Museum, San Diego Fine Art Museum, Mingei Museum, Tokyo Tower Group, Agro Dome, Veuve Clicquot, Ushikuaiwa General Hospital and others.

Philanthropy works (selected):

2001 to present: Books For Children on Earth (Founder)
Produced four children’s books and donated 12,000 copies to 82 Tibetan refugee schools in India, Nepal and Bhutan. 100% profit goes to the Tibetan refugee children’s education.

2015 Volunteered to create the Tibetan Government in Exile’s first sexual-health children’s book, “ReWa.
2009 to present: Donated paintings to “Art for Tibet” for Students for a Free Tibet
2011 Donated 100% profit from a painting, “Hope” to the Charity event for the Japanese Tsunami victims, Hong Kong
2006 Donated 100% profit from a painting, Madame Clicquot” to a charity for WWF.

Press/reviews:

Arte Fuse, Departures, Vogue, Elle, Marie Claire, The New Yorker, Time Out New York, Beverly Courier, Shambhara Sun, Buddhadharma, The Kee Magazine, The Peninsula Magazine, Yoga International, Cool Magazine, Nikkei News, Asahi News, TBS Television, Fuji Television, NHK Television, Spur Magazine, Art Beat, Asian Art (UK), Phayul News,
Sankei News, The Hindu (India), TLF Magazine (India) and others.

Documentaries (Biography):

  • “Artist Face” TBS Television, Japan
  • “Wonder” BS Television, Japan
  • “Artist, Rima Fujita” BS Television, Japan
  • “Rima Fujita” NHK Television, Japan

Television Art:

1993 to 1997 Contributing art as a special regular artist to a popular cultural program, At The Garden of Wordsworth. (Fuji Television)

Published essays and columns include:

Harper’s Bazaar, Modern Literature, Vogue and others.
(More than five hundreds essays have been published.)