Light from 311/ Kesennuma: Official project poster painting
January 1st, 2012, solitary in my Rosedale residence. It has been good so that I can focus on my commission paintings overdue from Christmas. One work to be done is a landscape painting of Kesennuma city, Miyagi prefecture, one of the most devastated cities of tsunami/earthquake in Japan on March 11th 2011. After the tsunami the city was covered by fire for few days and left with missing people, destroyed cityscape, debris, and ashes … it seemed for many that it would take few years before they could start rebuilding its industry, namely fishing and seafood processing. After few months though all the debris were removed from the streets by locals and volunteers from around the globe and now they have reopened their traditional “Ryokan” hotels, “Sento” public baths, “Izakaya” Japanese style pubs and even “Yokocho” shopping streets in temporary structures. Breath-taking!!! Young leaders got together and created a group called, “Kiraku kai (Enjoying Kesennuma group),” and they have been very active networking and rebuilding the local business and tourism. One of their big projects is March 11th memorial in 2012, and they have commissioned me to create a new painting of the city in “Kara” style to symbolize the project … ironically the series that I once named “Perfect World.” This 36 x 48 inches painting will be a kick start for my 2012, and is so significant for me because my humanitarian volunteer work and professional art practice has naturally emerged … I am so honoured to be a part of the long term rebuilding process … just got started.