Melding Western aesthetics, religious and iconic themes from the Renaissance, Japanese painting styles, satirical wit and social commentary, Masami Teraoka has developed a painting style filled with explosive imagery.
Teraoka is the Spring 2006 Jennifer Howard Coleman Distinguished Lecturer and Resident in Otis College of Art + Design’s Fine Arts Department from Sunday, April 9th, to Saturday, April 22nd, where he will be conducting one-on-one critiques with Otis students. Teraoka is also scheduled to give a free public lecture about his work entitled “Culture of Confession,” at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, April 13th, at Otis College of Art + Design, 9045 Lincoln Blvd., Westchester.
The Jennifer Howard Coleman Distinguished Lectureship and Residency is designed to give Otis students an opportunity to engage with a professional artist who is pursuing an active and viable studio practice. This program is funded through The Samuel Goldwyn Foundation.
Teraoka was born in 1936 in Onomichi, Japan. In 1959, he received his Bachelor of Arts in Aesthetics from Kwansei Gakuin University in Japan, and in 1968 a Bachelor and a Master of Fine Arts from Otis Art Institute (now Otis College of Art and Design).
He has been exhibiting his work internationally since 1974, and has won several awards from the National Endowment for the Arts. Over six monographs have been published about his work, with the newest book Ascending Chaos: Masami Teraoka 1966-2006 due out late this year from Chronicle Books. Two documentary films were produced, Masami Teraoka: Cloning Eve and Geisha by Lynda Hess (2004); and The Floating World: Masami Teraoka and His Art, by Louise Lo (2002). He currently lives in Hawaii and is represented by Catherine Clark Gallery in San Francisco.
“In the early ’70s I started my Ukiyo-e Series as a way to express my cultural identity,” says Teraoka, explaining the evolution of his style. “I worked with issues such as cultural homogenization, environmental degradation, and AIDS through the late 1980s.
“I have traveled abroad extensively from the late ’70s to the present and that helped me realize what American culture is all about.
“Americans love to confess to strangers and share their personal histories or discuss social and cultural issues with random others. This observation was the context for my Confessional Series, which started in the early 1990s. Sexual ethics, human and civil rights, and global issues became major forces behind my imagery.”
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