by Volunteer blogger Richard Wade
Harumo Sato is not like any artist you may have encountered before. Her vibrant and unique designs burst with color, regardless of what piece of ephemera they are placed upon. The young artist has created three children’s books; Homeless: Finding a Cat Story, Ramen Girl, and Danse Danse Danse by Cappuccino Cat (below, respectively). You can also find her colorful illustrations on t-shirts, pins, and posters. “Each of these stories had a connection to my life,” said Harumo.
Harumo moved from Japan to The United States in 2013 to continue her education. Mistakingly thinking that Buffalo was close to New York city, she attended The University of Buffalo and graduated in May 2015, earning her Bachelor’s Degree. “My first show at The University of Buffalo, I made ramen for everyone as a part of the show,” Sato said. “With art, it is important to entertain people and give a nice memory.”
While Japan and The United States both have varied cultures, there is one thing she wishes she could have here with her. “The textures and patterns of fabric are so brilliant,” said Sato. “It’s so rare to find anything similar like that here in The United States. I receive a lot of inspiration from the colors.”
The exhibition features Harumo Sato’s illustrations in the form of screen prints and life-size stickers. In this exhibition, Sato asks the audience to question their essential relationship with food. Throughout the exhibit, Sato references Japanese mythology about the harvest goddess Ogetsuhime, who kindly serves food that magically comes from all her orifices: eyes, ears, nose, vagina, and anus. She invites the viewer on a tasty journey of humanity and life with humor.
Since Fall of 2015, Harumo Sato has been a resident artist of the WNY Book Arts Center, hand-printing cards and posters for her line of Cappuccino Cat, Ramen Girl, and Dansing Cat merchandise. Be sure to swing on by for Harumo’s opening, check out the stunning installation, and her work for sale.
Sato’s show, Mogu Mogu ~ Munch Munch is the second in the 5×12 series at WNYBAC, a NYSCA-funded yearlong residency program which features five artists over the course of twelve months. An opening reception for the exhibition will be held Friday, March 25th from 6-9pm. Hors d’oeuvres will be served alongside a cash bar. The artist (or is it Ogetsuhime?!) will also be offering up special handmade food as part of the exhibition. Mogu Mogu ~ Munch Munch runs from March 25th-April 29th, 2016 Gallery visiting hours are 12-6pm, Wednesday-Saturday. Admission to the gallery is always free. If you have any questions, please visit either harumosato.com or wnybookarts.org/exhibitions for more information.
Richard Wade is a 2009 graduate of Buffalo State College, earning his Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism. He is a voracious reader who also enjoys collecting vinyl and attending concerts. Come visit him at the opening of Harumo’s show!