T.212.967.4899 | mail@ippodogallery.com | www.ippodogallery.com
祈  (inori) Prayer
Suikei Saito
[Calligraphy]
Item Number:A14677
Calligraphy Demonstration by Suikei Saito & Reception :

September 11 ( Friday ) 3:00 to 7:00 p.m.

at Museum of Arts and Design ( 7th floor ) 2 Columbus Circle, New York, NY 10019

Demonstration schedule
1) 3:30~
2) 4:30~
3) 5:30~

Please R.S.V.P. to mail@ippodogallery.com or call +1 212.967.4899


NEW YORK, NY, August 4, 2015 - Ippodo Gallery New York is delighted to announce that it will be holding the first exhibition outside Japan of work by calligrapher Suikei Saito, from September 12 to October 3, 2015. For the opening of this exhibition, Saito will perform the calligraphy demonstration “Praying for Peace” at the Museum of Arts and Design in New York on Friday, September 11 from 3:00 – 7:00 p.m. Reception for the artist will also take place during the demonstration.


“My struggle started when I became fascinated and astonished by the world of calligraphy, which is the ‘art of lines,’ and its depth, and when I made up my mind to master it.” – Suikei Saito


Suikei Saito first held a writing brush when she was twelve. After marrying and raising a family, Saito began searching for something to enrich her life. As fate would have it, she once again encountered calligraphy. With a renewed commitment to calligraphy she accepted the challenge of a journey without end. Her glyphs, created by a woman who has lived as a wife and a mother, are full of vitality, an enveloping warmth, an innocent boldness, a subtle humility, and, above all, a sense of elegance.

Saito has adopted the theme “Human, and We Live,” for her first solo exhibition in the human melting pot of New York. In preparation, she has set to work exhaustively on the character 人, hito, human, writing it again and again. It is a strange character that looks almost like two people are holding out their hands to support each other. She also wrote the characters for the full range of human emotions. Having explored the meaning and history of each character, her thoughts on paper are expressed in a state of no mind. Her calligraphy is an act of meditation, a spiritual dance. Each character is scattered one by one like sparks resembling elements in an abstract painting.

Calligraphy is an art woven of lines and the meanings of the characters. These Chinese characters originated in the Shang dynasty between 1700 and 1046 B.C.. While each letter in the alphabet indicates one sound, each Chinese character has one meaning, and there are well over 100,000 of these ideograms. Chinese characters began reaching Japan in the first century B.C. and have been used for two millennia to write Japanese. In Japan, they are known as kanji, “Chinese characters.” The art of calligraphy arrived later, with the transmission of Buddhism to Japan, and developed swiftly. Copying classic texts by the ancients or highly talented calligraphers became, for example, part of Zen training. By the late ninth century, in the Heian period, hiragana, a phonetic script unique to Japan was created to simplify writing Japanese. Calligraphy became regarded as one of Japan’s traditional arts, along with the tea ceremony, flower arranging, and the incense ceremony. There are now about seven or eight million practitioners of calligraphy in Japan. The writing implements used in calligraphy are distinctive. The brushes are made of animal hair (from sheep, tanuki raccoon dogs, and other sources). Sumi, ink, begins by mixing soot generated by burning either wood or oil (sesame, rapeseed, or soybean oil) with glue to form an ink stick. Some ink sticks are four hundred years old. Rubbing the ink stick on an inkstone or suzuri, which has a small pool of water at one end creates the smooth glossy liquid ink used in calligraphy. The process of taking time to rub the ink stick and make one’s own ink could be said to be a ritual in itself.

Today in our digital world, glyphs of all sorts are mass produced by machine. The glyphs that human beings write are, however, never the same. No two are ever alike. They are thus a tool of communication that captures the vigor, the energy, and even the heart and soul of the individual. Through the swing and graze of Saito’s brush and in the distinctive marks that result, the subtleties of the heart are expressed. This work goes beyond writing to become a form of painting.

By offering a demonstration of calligraphy in New York on September 11, Saito wishes to communicate the splendor of uniting without conflict. We, Ippodo Gallery believe that her calligraphy transcends language to speak to us, to show us a path by which people can unite.


[ Suikei Saito’s Biography ]

1988 Studied under Syunkei Yahagi
1990 Won her first prize in the 42nd Mainichi Shodo Exhibition
1991 Won her first prize in the 39th Dokuritsu Sho Exhibition
2002/2003 Received an excellent prize at the 50th and 51st Dokuritsu Sho Exhibition
2005 Received a Parliament Building Vice-President Award at Vienna New Century
Court Art Festival (held at the Imperial Palace at Innsbruck, Austria)
2006 Received a gold prize at Today's Japanese Art Exhibition (held at Monaco
Festival in 2006)
2010 Received an excellent prize at the 62nd Mainichi Shodo Exhibition

Present: An associate member of the Mainichi Shodo Association
An associate member of the Dokuritsu Shojindan Foundation
An instructor at Shiragiku-kai, Kioi Art Gallery, The Space "MAI"
About the Artist
Saito, a highly regarded female calligrapher, brings to life Japanese calligraphy with exceptional grace and elegance. Saito conveys the beauty and joy of life through her energetically bold and gestural mastery of brush and sumi ink.

1988 Apprenticed to Shunkei Yahagi
1990 Won her first prize in the 42nd Mainichi Shodo Exhibition
1991 Won her first prize in the 39th Dokuritsu ‘Sho’ Exhibition
2002/2003 Received an excellent prize at the 50th and 51st Dokuritsu ‘Sho’ Exhibition
2005 Received a Parliament Building Vice-President Award at Vienna New Century
Court Art Festival held at the Imperial Palace in Innsbruck, Austria
Solo exhibition Assemblage of lines at Ginza Matsuzaki Gallery
2006 Received a gold prize at Today's Japanese Art Exhibition held at Monaco Festival
2010 Received an excellent prize at the 62nd Mainichi Shodo Exhibition
Group exhibition Core at Hayama Bunkaen
2014 Solo exhibition Thinking of ‘Kukai’ at Ippodo Gallery Tokyo
Group calligraphy exhibition Issui Kai at Ginza Kyukyodo Gallery
2015 Solo exhibition Art of Lines – Human, and We Live at Ippodo Gallery New York
Solo exhibition Thinking of ‘Zen' at Galerie Landrot Paris
Exhibited at SOFA Chicago
2017 Group exhibition The Essence of Imperfection : Wabi Sabi at Ippodo Gallery New York
2018 Contributed a scroll 'Coexistence' at the 7th "Peace is ... " event at the United
Nations in New York

Public collections:
Philadelphia Museum of Art / Philadelphia, USA
Detroit Institute of Arts / Detroit, MI, USA
Phaya Thai Palace Collection, 70th Anniversary of the reign of King Bhumibol Adulyadej / Thailand
Newsroom of Fuji Television / Tokyo, Japan (Appeared on a live TV show in 2016)
The Embassy of Algeria / Tokyo, Japan (March, 2017)

Present:
A fellow member of the Mainichi Shodo Association
A member of the Dokuritsu Shojindan Foundation
Instructor of calligraphy class at Hotel New Otani
Instructor at International House of Japan (Azabu, Tokyo) Calligraphy School


Suikei Saito's Calligraphy Exhibition 2015 ' Human, and We Live ' from Shoko Aono on Vimeo.