Saskatchewan Landscapes and Japanese Aesthetics Intersect for Melfort’s All-New Art Exhibit

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Melfort Arts Council’s latest visual exhibition bridges Japanese design principles with Saskatchewan’s natural landscapes.

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The exhibition, titled Calling, features the meditative, artisanal fiber works of Saskatchewan artist Hanna Yokozawa Farquharson. It was organized by the Moose Jaw Museum and Art Gallery.

It will be on display at the Kerry Vickar Center until May 23.

Originally from Japan, where she worked in architectural and landscape digital design with a focus on stonework, the artist’s works are inspired by the
aesthetic and design principles of her cultural and professional journey, while responding to the natural landscapes and experiences of her new home as a newcomer to Saskatchewan.

Yokozawa Farquharson finds inspiration in the natural world, from the intimate discoveries of frost, the spiral shapes of tree rings, and the textures found in moss and prairie grasses, to celestial skies, stars, and the cycles of nature. moon.

She also finds inspiration in her community and her memories, as evidenced by works such as Circles, in its reference to the interconnected circles of community, family and the wider world, and the collection of shells and fossils. , which are based on his memories of his mother. and childhood treasures of the sea.

The artist interprets these fabric subjects, rendering his subjects by manipulating his materials and presenting them as abstract forms through quilted patterns and textures.

Elegance and simplicity of form and an embrace of texture and randomness in the works speak to the Japanese concept of Wabi Sabi — find the
beauty in imperfection.

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The abstract nature of the work also allows it to present itself as meditations, as quiet moments to pause and reflect, alluding to symbolism and abstract concepts of time, memory, history and states of being.

The artist recognizes that his work, through these references, has another Japanese aesthetic concept, mono no knowledge, which refers to a sweet sadness or a nostalgia in the face of the ephemeral nature of life.

In an artist statement made in 2020, Yokozawa Farquharson said that this exhibition showcases his exploration of the wonders of life.

This collection of works, through their calm and poetic beauty, presents the exploration of the wonder of life in all its interconnectedness and yet it reflects an acceptance of its impermanence, acknowledging that it is only by embracing its fleeting nature that we can truly embrace life with harmony and wholeness, she says.

The call will continue at the Kerry Vickar Center Art Gallery until Monday, May 23.

Christopher S. Washington