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Japanese Artist Ayomi Yoshida's "Yedoensis" Installation
Detail of Ayomi Yoshida's "Yedoensis" installation in progress. Photo: Kim Strom.

DEKALB, IL.-The Northern Illinois University Art Museum presents “Ayomi Yoshida: Yedoensis” through March 7, 2008. The Japanese artist has been in residency since late December to install a large scale site-specific installation. The progress on her installation “Yedoensis,”(latin for cherry blossoms), can be followed online at Over the course of the month, 100,000 hand-printed cherry blossoms will bedeck the gallery walls. During the final weeks of installation, beginning January 15, the gallery will be open to the public so that visitors may view the process in progress. The public is invited to the Gala Reception on Thursday, January 24, from 4:30 - 7:30 p.m. The Japanese American Service Committee Tsukasa Taiko Drummers will give a traditional Japanese drumming demonstration during the reception at 5:15 p.m. and again at 6:00 p.m. The JASC Tsukasa Taiko drum ensemble will perform later that evening at 8 p.m. at Boutell Music Hall.

“Ayomi Yoshida: Yedoensis” brings an early spring to Illinois. The site-specific installation covers the Rotunda Gallery’s walls with drawn trees adorned with hundreds of cherry blossoms. Each cherry blossom was hand-printed on a one inch by one inch square of rice paper, taking a form nearly as delicate as an organic bloom. Each blossom is placed individually with care by Yoshida and her installation crew. A publication documenting the project with essays by art critic Margaret Hawkins and Minneapolis Institute of Arts Curator of Asian Art, Matthew Welch is in production.

Contemporary Japanese artist Ayomi Yoshida is the fourth generation of the Yoshida family printmaking dynasty. Her temporary installation will both contrast and augment the concurrent “Ukiyo-e Prints from the Richard F. Grott Family Collection” and “Revisiting Modern Japanese Prints: Selected Works from the Richard F. Grott Family Collection” exhibitions at the NIU Art Museum. Her installation utilizes the exact same tools and techniques of traditional wood block printmaking and carries the artistic evolution of Japanese printmaking to the present day.

A working artist for nearly thirty years, Ayomi Yoshida’s works have been featured in the British Museum, the Minneapolis Institute of Art, and other venues including several international print biennials. Yoshida created a permanent installation for Target Corporation at its Minneapolis headquarters from 2003. She also designed limited edition gift wrap with Target in 2006 to distribute in its stores under the moniker “Ayomi Yoshida: ART + DESIGN”. She is currently working on a second series of gift wrap which will be available in Target stores in May 2008.

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