Ormond Beach, Fla.
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Akiko Sugiyama was born in Japan and majored in painting at Joshibi Daigaku in Tokyo. She moved to the United States in 1974. One day, her husband brought home some onion paper for her to paint her watercolor on. When Sugiyama used the onion paper for her painting, she didn't like the way it turned out so she tried to toss it in the trash can, but missed. As it lay on the floor, the sunshine caught it and the texture of the paper inspired Sugiyama. Since then, she has been creating works of art with paper and other materials such as wire, wax, gold leaves, dried leaves, and whatever else she would find on the ground that inspired her.
Sugiyama makes a deliberate effort to form multitudes of hand-colored and hand-cut paper pieces into subtle designs that are meant to convey the more enduring human aspects of life. Japanese children’s stories and folk tales, heard in her early years, diffuse in larger works that reflect personal experiences and views of our contemporary society.
Her work has appeared in various galleries and museums and has received recognition at major fine craft shows such as the American Craft Exposition, the Philadelphia Museum of Art Craft Show and the Smithsonian Craft Show.