Ayomi Yoshida: As Cherry Blossoms Fall

22 January 2016

Ayomi Yoshida: As Cherry Blossoms Fall

The cherry blossom or sakura is a beloved national symbol in Japan whose annual flowering has been celebrated since the 9th century. Festivals that used to take place in April now take place in March because of global warming, which has caused cherry trees to bloom earlier and earlier in the year. Japanese print and installation artist Ayomi Yoshida (b. 1958) wonders: will there come a time when the trees fail to bloom?

YEDOENSIS, a room-size installation series begun in 2008, reflects on the ephemerality of life that cherry blossoms symbolize. Comprised of thousands of tiny woodcut petals glued into place one by one, the on-site installation at the Perlman Teaching Museum required the help of a large team of assistants who joined Yoshida from Japan for the first weeks of January. The tedious, painstaking work is an exercise in the incomparability of human industry to nature. The artist also finds satisfaction and hope in seeing small individual acts amount to something much larger.

The Perlman has had the help of several departments across campus in welcoming our Japanese guests and wishes to thank: Art and Art History, Asian Languages and Literature, Asian Studies, and Cinema and Media Studies. The artist’s visit was sponsored in part by the Elizabeth Nason Distinguished Women Visitors Fund.

Prints by Yoshida’s former student assistants – Fumiko Hasegawa, Nao Masuda, Takako Sato, Emi Tanaka, and Norio Taniguchi – will be on view on the 4th floor of the Laurence McKinley Gould Library during the winter term.

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