Project Description

Makoto Fujimura

Makoto Fujimura fuses traditional Nihonga painting with the techniques of Western abstraction.  Fujimura uses stone-ground minerals such as gold, platinum, malachite, azurite, and cinnabar.  He believes that the minerals-particularly-allow for a fuller exploration of the space between flattness of abstraction and interior space of representation.  “Gold is that paradox: it creates space (by being semi-transparent) and remains flat (by being mirror-like) at the same time,” says Fujimura.  His deep religious faith attracts him to the metaphysical aspects of Abstract Expressionism and Color Field Painting.

Born in the United States and trained in Japan, Fujimura’s extensive exposure to both Western and Asian art has created a unique fusion of two in his own work.  He spent his early years in Japan and returned as a postgraduate on a Japanese governmental scholarship to study Nihonga (traditional Japanese painting) at the Tokyo University of Fine Art. 

Graduating from his MFA program as the top painter, he began an apprenticeship with the master Nihonga painter Matazo Kayama to pursue his doctoral studies.  Fujimura was able to experiment with the Nihonga tradition, achieving a synthesis he continues to explore today between his outsider point of view and classical Japanese painting.  Fujimura’s works are included in the collections of almost every major museum in Japan and has exhibited extensively throughout the United States and world.

EDUCATION
2015
Honorary Doctorate, Roanoke College
2014
Honorary Doctorate, Caim University
2012
Honorary Doctorate, Biola University
2011
Honorary Doctorate, Belhaven University
1992
Tokyo National University of Fine Arts and Music, Doctoral Level program in Nihonga
1989
Tokyo National University of Fine Arts and Music, M.F.A
1983
Bucknell University, double major in Animal Behavior and Art, B.A.
 
SELECTED SOLO EXHIBITIONS
2016
November Flowers, Sukiwa Gallery, Tokyo
2016
Silence and Beauty, Waterfall Mansion Gallery, New York City, NY
2015
A Glimpse of Splendor, Artrue Beaux Arts, Taiwan
2015
Fire and Water, Artrue Beaux Arts and Galerie Huit, Hong Kong
2015
Aroma, Artrue Beaux Arts, Taiwan
2013
Golden Sea, Dillon Gallery, New York
2013
Golden Sea and the Four Holy Gospels, Yale University, New Haven
2010
The Four Holy Gospels, Dillon Gallery, NYC, Addingtong Gallery, Chicago, Takashimaya Gallery Tokyo, and other locations
2010
Soliloquies, Bucknell Soliloquies, Shanghai, China
2009
Charis, Exit Gallery, Hong Kong
2009
Olana, Whitestone Gallery, Philadelphia
2009
Rouault – Fujimura, Soliloquies, New York City
2008
Charis, Dillon Gallery, New York
2006
Golden Flames, Sara Tecchia Roma, New York City
2006
Making Peace, The City of London Festival with Yoko Ono London, France
2005
Water Flames, Sara Tecchia Roma, New York City
2003
The Still Point, Takashimaya Gallery, Tokyo, Japan
2003
Golden Pines, Dillon Gallery, Oyster Bay, New York
2003
Four Quartets, Kristen Frederickson Contemporary, New York City
2002
Columbines, Matsuya Art Gallery, Tokyo, Japan
2002
Gravity and Grace, Belles Artes Gallery, Sante Fe, New Mexico
2002
Makoto Fujimura, Yoshiaki Inoue Gallery, Osaka, Japan
2002
Makoto Fujimura, The Eugene and Leona Olson Gallery Bethel College, Minnesota
2001
Makoto Fujimura Restrospective III, Sen Gallery, Tokyo, Japan
2001
Makoto Fujimura, Dillon Gallery, Oyster Bay, New York
2001
Gravity and Grace, Laurel Tracey Gallery, Red Bank, New Jersey
2001
The Burning Bush, Engstrom Galleria, Taylor University, Indiana
2001
Makoto Fujimura, The Henry Luce III Center for Arts and Religion, Washington, D.C.
2001
Quince, Narthex and Stairwell Gallery, St. Peter’s Church, New York City
2001
New York Works, Barrington Center for the Arts, Godon College, Massachusetts
2000
Altarpiece, St. James Chapel, Union Theological Seminary, New York City
2000
St. John Project, Dillon Gallery, Oyster Bay, New York
2000
Makoto Fujimura Retrospective II, Sen Gallery, Tokyo, Japan
1999
Millennium Exhibition, Cathedral Church of St. John the Divine, New York City
1999
Makoto Fujimura Retrospective I, Sen Gallery, Tokyo, Japan
1998
Hours, Dillon Gallery, Oyster Bay, New York
1998
Makoto Fujimura, Gallery You, Kyoto, Japan
1998
Makoto Fujimura, Kawarahara Gallery, Kyoto, Japan
1997
Images of Grace, Dillon Gallery, Oyster Bay, New York
1997
The City of God, Gallery You, Kyoto, Japan
1997
Makoto Fujimura, Kawarahara Gallery, Kyoto, Japan
 
SELECTED GROUP EXHIBITIONS
2016
A New Year’s Exhibit at Isetan, Isetan Museum, Nigata, Japan
2016
Sustaining Life, Waterfall Mansion Gallery, New York City
2013
Gold Rush, Bentley Gallery, Phoenix, AZ
2012
GOLD, Beelvedere Museum, Vienna, Austria
2012
Edo to Video: Japanese Screens, Dillon Gallery, New York City
2011
Nihonga: New Traditions, Dillon Gallery, New York City
2010
Shadow: Six Asian Artists, Martin-Mullen Art Gallery, State University of New York College at Oneonta
2010
Nihonga: New Traditions, Dillon Gallery, New York City
2009
Nihonga: New Traditions, Dillon Gallery, New York City
2007
New Art, Curated by Keiji Hayashi, Yokohama Citizen’s Gallery
2007
0x0 Hiroshima, curated by Kasumi Kitada, Hiroshi Senju
2005
The Voting Booth Project, Parsons School of Design, New York City
2003
The WRONG Exhibit, Birmingham, U.K.
2002
WATERwalks, ISE Cultural Foundation, New York City
2002
The Return of Beauty, Kristen Federickson Gallery, New York
1999
Two-T, TriBeCa Temporary Exhibits, New York City Inaugural Exhibit
1999
Makoto Fujimura, James Elaine and William Basinski TriBeCa Temporary Exhibits, New York City
1999
Art as Prayer, Cooper Union Gallery, New York City
1999
Nihonga, Dillon Gallery, New York
1999
Fifth Annual Invitational, Dillon Gallery, New York
1998
Summer Group Exhibition, Dillon Gallery, New York
1998
The Last “‘Hisho” Exhibit, Tamaya Gallery, Tokyo, Japan
1997
Black or White, Dillon Gallery, New York
1997
Neo-Rimpa, Yoshiaki Inoue Gallery, Osaka, Japan
1997
Drawings II, Tamaya Gallery, Japan
 
SELECTED PUBLIC COLLECTIONS
Cincinnati Art Museum
Roberta Ahmanson
Howard and Roberta Ahmanson
Howard Lutnik
Contemporary Museum of Tokyo
Tokyo Museum of Modern Art
Oxford House, CNN/Time Warner Building, Taikoo Place, Hong Kong
The Sato Museum
St. Louis Art Museum
Tamaya Corporation
Sanbi-Shosha Collection, Japan
Tokyo National University of Fine Arts and Music
Yamaguchi Prefecture Museum
Nerima Art Museum
Kikkoman Corporation
 
SELECTED PUBLICATIONS
2016
Alejandro Pardo. Silence and Beauty by Makoto Fujimura, Wall Street Journal International
2013
The Golden Sea, The Brooklyn Rail
2011
Four Centuries of Love and Suffering for the Word, The Wall Street Journal
2010
Master in Depth The Multidimensional Makoto Fujimura David Gelernter
2009
Rouault & Fujimura, Square Halo press, Thomas Hibbs
2008
Culture Makers Andy Crouch
2008
Artist of Faith, Michelle Morrissey, Salem news
2007
Review: American Composer’s Orchestra, Steve Smith,The New York Times
2007
Can Paintings Create Music, Sara Rose, Associated Press, Washington Times, MSNBC, The Canadian Press, Times of India, and other newspapers
2007
Faith in Art, Eric Gorski, Associated Press, Guardian Unlimited, Seattle Times, MSNBC, The Honolulu Advisor and other newspapers
2007
Maureen Mullarkey. The New York Sun, Winter Trio: Laurie Fendrich at Katherina Rich Perlow; Alice Federico at George Billis Gallery, Makoto Fujimura at Sara Tecchia Roma, Available at http://www.maureenmullarkey.com/essays/fendrich.html
2006
British Broadcasting Company, Destination Tokyo: Yayoi Kusama, Makoto Fujimura And others, August
2005
Christine Cavallomagno. Makoto Fujimura, Sublime Mystery, NYArts Magazine, December
2003
David Gelernter. A Faithful Art: Makoto Fujimura and the redemption of abstract expressionism, The Weekly Standard, March 7, 2003
2003
Booyeon Lee. Simple Truth: Art of Makoto Fujimura, International Herald Tribune, November
2003
The Splendor of a Medium. Kristen Frederickson Contemporary
2002
Richard Tobin. Gravity and Grace, THE Magazine
2002
Kyle MacMillan. Street of Treasure in Santa Fe, Denver Post
2002
Ellison Walcott. Much to discover in two Tribeca exhibits, Downtown Express, June 18-24
2002
Wayne Roosa. A Three-Part Meditation on Makoto Fujimura’s Triptych, Bethel College
2002
Makoto Fujimura, Retrospective III, Sen Gallery, Tokyo
2001
Beauty without Regret, curated by Robert Kushner, Bellas Artes, Santa Fe, New Mexico
2001
Transcendent Space; with Mineral Pigments, Daily Yomiuri, May 25
2001
William A. Dyrness. Visual Faith: art, theology and worship in dialogue, Baker Academic
2001
The Pursuit of Faith Through Art, The Japan Times, April 18
2001
Tim Walker, Japanese Art Displayed in Galleria, Arts and Entertainment, The Echo, April 20
2001
Off the Walls, Worldwide Challenge Magazine
2001
Makoto Fujimura, Retrospective II, Sen Gallery, Tokyo
2000
Makoto Fujimura, Retrospective I, Sen Gallery, Tokyo
2000
Nihonga of the 20th Century, Tokyo National University Museum Press
2000
St. John’s Project, Dillon Gallery Press

Artsy Editorial – Art Worth its Weight in Gold
Contemporary uses of gold have stretched far beyond its historical foundations in societal status, wealth and spirituality. As a substance with legendary qualities, subject and form no longer limit gold.  In Bentley Gallery’s exhibition Gold Rush, 15 artists come together to challenge perceptions (and uses) of the world’s most alluring metal. 

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