Toko Shinoda  【English】


Snapshot of a great, world-class female artist today

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Iwaseki: I see you are turning 99 this year—congratulations!

Shinoda: Yes, I have been around a long time, I suppose. But age is the only thing that comes to us all; yes, you too will grow old, just like that elderly person you see. Age inevitably keeps coming upon us, every year, no matter our circumstances. Most things in life are not equal, but we all get a year older every year, all of us (laughs).

Iwaseki: The Boston Museum of Fine Arts recently added to its collection some of the etchings you have embarked on more recently: are there any other new challenges ahead for you?

Shinoda: Well much to my amazement, there seems to be some switch inside me I never knew about before. I still find myself turning out new creations every day, as if a switch is flicked, and new things start to pour out, overflowing. At the moment I’m writing the Hyakunin Isshu poems on some paper from Karacho that I’ve carefully held on to for decades. I did a special limited edition of the Hyakunin Isshu put out by Gakken about 30 years ago (1983), and thought I’d give it another go. And there’s talk of a mural in the US, so I might end up going back to the States, at this age, goodness (laughs). I’m not sure I could physically  make it.

Shinoda-san’s precious decorative paper from venerable paper merchants Karacho.

Iwaseki: In this studio, where every effort has been made to minimize artificial light, sunshine flows in, giving the space a different aspect every day of the year: why Shinoda produces a different painting every day. Her latest work on this occasion was as impressive as ever, and sitting in front of it, sensing my imagination take flight as I spoke with Shinoda, made for a blissful interlude.

In the studio with its mellow natural light.

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“Toko Shinoda” Print exhibition

September 7 ~ October 8 . 2018

at Gallery Sakuranoki KARUIZAWA
closed on Tuesday Wednesday Thursday