Yoshio Ikezaki was born in Kitakyushu City in 1953. He studied papermaking in Japan and then received a BA and an MFA from Florida State University. As an avid artist and teacher, his time is now divided between Los Angeles and Kitakyushu in southern Japan. In both cultures he teaches papermaking and brush painting, as well as philosophy and aesthetics classes at such places as Tama Art University in Tokyo, Southern California Institute of Architecture, UCLA Extension and the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena. He has lectured at Cooper Union, Pratt Art Institute and the Parsons School of Design in New York, among others.
Because of his fascination with dimensionality, Yoshio Ikezaki has also explored sculptural work. The heavily layered papers are colored with sumi ink and may also have a Buddhist inscription. He has also collaborated with Western artists,
actors, and musicians doing stage design. Yoshio Ikezaki’s work joins East and West, modern and traditional in a completely unique fashion. They conjure up the literal, yet evoke the metaphysical as well. There is a poeticism and ethereal beauty embedded within each piece, creating in the viewer the sense of moving through the landscape of a human mind. Like the traditional Sumi-e painting, references to nature and mans relationship to nature are key.
Ikezaki’s images are mysterious and evocative. This enigmatic quality is derived partly from the fact that Ikezaki mixes his own ink, including in it mineral particles that give the surface of the painting a slight iridescence. The result is a kinetic composition, lending the piece different dynamics as the viewer moves around it. The truly incredible thing about the way Ikezaki works is that he never physically paints with his hands. Having mastered his own “chi”(the Chinese word for the vital life source that exists within every one of us), Ikezaki uses that energy to move the ink across the paper.