A digital archive of Asian/Asian American contemporary art history

Tsuda, Rumiko

Other Names: 津田るみ子


"I love my Japanese traditional arts. They are so neat and simple.
I always receive meditative and peaceful feelings from them.
But I almost feel I am staying in the guest room, so to speak and I can not make any mess and noise in there. This space dose not have the quality of a living room, where I can talk, sing and make my wonderful mess. I like to invite people to my idea of an art living room; sometimes in my art guest room, too. My historical reference is very important in my art works, because I am usually stating a dilemma between two cultures. I am comparing each to the other every time. Since I left Japan, its culture dos not fit my life anymore. I am Building up my own image of Japanese culture from my art, life and nostalgia for Japan.

Since the 1980's I have been creating and developing my personal ceremony of art in installations, performances and paintings. My ceremony of art combines The Idea of Tea ceremony and The Idea of Art Making. The garden and tea house in which the tea ceremony occurs in a total environment that allows people to leave their egoistic and material world and makes them comfortable. Ritual and repetitions movement of the ceremony can purify the mind as they give peaceful and spiritual moments. Whether in live performance or in the private performance I project into my paintings, I begin by creating an environment and then through my activity–-sometimes calm, sometimes wild–-I let viewers experience my process of art making.

In my paintings often a dominant graphic gesture floats on rich abstract space. The spaces are created over several sessions using a variety of media. I use this time to clear my mind of considerations outside of my art and to intensify my sensibility. After I have set up the space, in a separate single session, I make the central forms which are the product of very strong concentration on the moment of execution. These usually dark marks are inspired by my study of Japanese calligraphy. They are like kanji characters, but they are invented spontaneously. The background of the painting is like the installation or stage and the stroke of painting is like my live performance.

All of my work is conditioned by the cross-influences of the USA, Japan, and the international community which I feel a part of both from the many different kinds of people I have come to know in New York and in the variety of faces I see on the subway and everywhere I go in the city."

Rumiko Tsuda, Artist Statement, 1999

Gallery of Selected Works

Selected Documents

Other Links

View artist folder list at Asian American Arts Centre