Kumi Yamashita’s Constellation Portraits
Nails and a single black thread.
Today, the work of Japanese artist Kumi Yamashita inspired me to stop, breathe, and rededicate myself to the task at hand, full of gratitude for what is possible with patience, dedication, imagination, and grace. Amazing.
Thanks to Kenji Liu for introducing me to Yamashita’s work. (What she does with light and shadows is also incredible.) While I don’t know whether she is Buddhist (anyone else know?), her work certainly speaks to me about the fragmentation and ultimate illusoriness of the “self.” A face made from thread. A body made of shadows. Tricycle seems to agree: a few years ago they paired a photograph of one of Yamashita’s works with an article by Andrew Olendzki called “I Think I Am: The five ways I don’t belong to me.”