Here & Now, Art, 6 Questions for Mai Ryuno, Power of Play, Walking Fukuoka, Minnie Small's 10 Books, Hedonic Design (Mastroianni), Susan Vega, The Kiffness+Jute+Veronica Rat, & Gogol Bordello.
HERE AND NOW
First, I’d like to thank all my new and continuing subscribers to Eulipion Outpost! While I don’t have the thousands of subscribers that some of the Substack “stars” have, I’m really happy to have my growing niche group, and appreciate any comments and discussion.
Quick one: Last night’s “anti-scrolling” drawing, made while listening to one of Harrison Divecha’s atmospheric dub techno mixes. Music has the power to move you; I think this may represent some momentum forward out of my aforementioned “creative slump.”
SIX QUESTIONS FOR MAI RYUNO
I’m happy to feature Mai Ryuno in this issue, a conceptual artist and educator who brings some much-needed playfulness to this community, along with her own installation and performance art that addresses social issues. Her studio Play Full Ground is a rich resource for artists in the Monterey and surrounding areas.
1. Where did you grow up and how did that (or any other significant experience) influence your art?
I grew up in Fukuoka, Japan where social life is vibrant and vital. This influenced me to become an artist as an experience maker and create interactions between me and the audience/participants within my installation and performance artwork. Not so religious, but naturally philosophical aspects of the country have influenced my way of looking at the relationship between my art, life and myself as well.
Additionally, not the location itself, but my upbringing has a huge influence on my art. My interest in social issues came from my father having been a supporter of the Japan Communist Party and my other interest in fashion and design came from my mother with a keen sense of details in them. Also, having been given a lot of freedom and treated as an independent individual regardless of social expectations by my parents allowed me to be who I am and express myself freely.
Short Video: Let’s Celebrate Women.
2. What’s your creative process like?
As a conceptual everyday artist, my creative process is embedded in my everyday life. To me, the process itself is art and all of my life activities require the creative process of thinking and then, doing. The way in which I treat my daily action makes it either art or just a routine. I try to do as much art as possible in my everyday life with curiosity, playfulness and positivity as expressions of myself.
Playful Resilience was a theme during the pandemic, and I shared my sheltering in place via digital videos/social media. Mai’s Playful Resilience Playlist (on YouTube)
3. What puts a damper on your creativity? What do you do—if anything—to remedy that?
If creativity were just mental, I would have no problem having ideas. I often say to my husband, “Listen, I got an idea!” And then, he says, “that’s not surprising . . .” However, realizing the ideas into reality is often difficult with my limited resources: time and money. (I have so many ideas and some of them are big ones!) I try to be resourceful and create something with what I have although it may not be in the ideal scale, form, location, etc., while seeking ways to make my dreams come true in the future.
Performance Video “"Everyday Art Performance”:
4. Does age factor into your creative process, and if yes, how?
Yes, for good. For my art, quite literally, I am the artwork. In a sense, the more knowledge, skills and experience I have in my life, the richer the artwork becomes. For the last 20 years, I’ve changed my art practice from the traditional/product-based, primarily printmaking, to the contemporary/conceptual, installation and performance. This change made my art truer to who I am. At the same time, my art has taught me about myself. It’s the process of learning, unlearning and relearning through the creative process for me to keep evolving with more depth and richness in meanings and purposes every time I create and learn.
Short Video - Performance Drawing: https://youtube.com/shorts/ChUCHwiP5ZA?feature=share
5. What are you working on, currently, and what’s inspiring it?
I am working on clarity, focus and consistency. This means that I am trying to find what I possess is truly valuable to share with others and contribute to this world. I have so many interests, love for doing something new all the time, thus can be very easily distracted. I am passionate about art for my expression and a vehicle for learning as well as an alternative education for creativity as my way of sharing, making changes in our society and also learning. Lifelong learning is what’s inspiring me as my friend once said, “Mai’s career should be a student.”
6. What’s your favorite imperfection?
Being a human.
Mai Ryuno is a conceptual artist and educator who uses everyday life as inspiration and creates the art of everyday life. She believes that art is for everyone and everyday regardless of one’s artistic talents and supports everyone’s creative journey to find their inner child, joy and freedom and make their everyday art through her approach to life and teaching.
A group of kids give valuable instruction to a group of adults on how to play, and everyone has a good time:
I thought it would be fun to go for a walk in Fukuoka; 1 hr, 22 min.; sound but no narration:
Minnie Small – life-changing books on art and creativity:
Susan Vega: “Fools Complaint” from her album Tales from the Realm of the Queen of Pentacles.
Ooooh, Veronica . . . Because I just know you need this right now: The Kiffness and Jute Scott with Veronica the Rat on Harmonica:
OK, now get out there and PLAY!
And visit my website.
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