BIO and C.V.

BIO/Artist Statement

Mami Takahashi is a multidisciplinary artist and scholar based in Portland. She integrates traditional and contemporary approaches in ideas, methods, and media to address unconscious perceptions in societal norms such as unconscious definition of Americans.

She states:

“A friend of mine lives in a Chinese American community, where she primarily spoke Chinese. After a visit to Mexico, she was stopped by border police who questioned her American citizenship. Her difficulty with English became a barrier to her re-entry into her own country. Americans who do not use English in their everyday lives are often obstructed from full participation.”

Takahashi’s recent work interrogates viewers’ perspectives on American-ness. As a non-native English user in the US, she integrates her English usage into her visual practices. By collecting English terms from news articles and utilizing pronunciation symbols, she abstracts and de-familiarizes terms known by native speakers. She shares the struggle non-native English speakers experience when communicating with first-language speakers, and the limits imposed through these interactions.

She also states:

"The human body is a tool for communicating, and often, we have very little control over what our body tells others. In my painting, performance, video, and photographic work, I explore the boundaries between public and private self, the differences in social norms between cultures, and the expressiveness of the body. In my performative works, I use myself as the subject of my videos and photos in order to evoke the sense of alienation, displacement, and misunderstanding that occurs when one is between cultures as well as to explore the ways in which we unintentionally give away personal information through our actions and expressions."

Takahashi received her MFA in Contemporary Studio Practice from Portland State University (Portland, OR) in 2013. She earned a BFA in Japanese painting from Joshibi University of Art and Design (Japan) where she was awarded a prize for her thesis work. Takahashi also obtained an Associate of Fine Art in Aesthetics from Aoyama-gakuin Women’s College (Tokyo, Japan). Currently, she is a research scholar at the University of Oregon focusing on the conceptual understanding of Japanese aesthetics. Her work has been collected and exhibited internationally include Toriizaka Art in Japan, Gwangju Fork Art Museum in South Korea, Southern Alberta Art Gallery in Canada, International Museum in Texas, and Littman Gallery in Oregon. 

Selected Solo Exhibitions
2015          demarcate, Littmen Gallery at Portland State University (PSU), Portland OR
2014          com·mu·ni·ca·tion, Dengerink gallery, Washington State University (WSU) Vancouver WA
2013          Umeru 埋, MK Gallery at Portland State University (PSU), Portland OR
                  Award Exhibition 2013, Allied Arts Gallery, Richland, WA
2009          Her Loneliness, Toriizaka Art Gallery, Tokyo Japan
2006          East Meets West, The International Museum of Art, El Paso TX
2005          Art Dialogue, Art House Kleinschmidt, Tokyo Japan
2003          Fly, Fall, Float, Gallery Katze, Saitama Japan
2002          Bacteriophage, ONO Gallery, Tokyo Japan

Selected Group Exhibitions and Performance
2015          Glooming Shadow, performance (sound/projection/performance), Henjyoji, Portland, OR
2015          Within/Without, visual/sound exhibition, c3:initiative+Pulp&Deckle, Portland, OR
2014          International Women Art Exhibition, visual exhibition, Gwangju Folk Art Museum, Korea
                  The Missing Body:performance in the absence of the artist, S. Alberta Art Gallery, Canada
                  Collaboration, performance (sound/video projection/installation) Kincainya, Portland OR
2013          Room Tone (participatory performance), sound/performance, TBA:13, PICA, Portland OR       
                  Maybe, visual exhibiition, Place Gallery, Portland OR                 
                  Here Comes Warm Jets, visual exhibition, UpFor Gallery, Portland OR (catalogue)
                  Experimental Film Festival 2013, video projection, Portland OR                  
                  Sometimes Between Notions, visual exhibition, Ditch Project, Springfield OR
2012          The Summer is Over Before It’s Begun, visual exhibition, Autzen Gallery, Portland OR
                  Pacific Northwest Art Annual, visual exhibition, Adell McMillan Gallery, Eugene OR
                  13:13, visual exhibition, Swell Gallery at the San Francisco Art Institute CA
                  13:13, visual exhibition, The Gallery of Visual Art at the Montana University MT
2008          Water, visual exhibition, Durango Art, Durango Mexico
2005          Olfactory Factory, performance, International House of Japan, Tokyo, Japan

2013           MFA Award, Allied Art Association, Richland WA

Related Experience
2015           Public Talk with Kristan Kennedy:Talk and Video Screening, c3: initiative, Portland OR
                   Public Talk with Cass Grey: demarcate, Littman Gallery, Portland OR 
2014           Residency at c3:initiative and Pulp & Deckle, Portland OR
                   Public Lecture: Use of Gold and Silver Leaf in Japanese Painting: Edo period to Present,    
                     Japanese Culture Center, Chicago, IL
                   Workshop: Asian Papers and Inks, PSU, Portland OR
2013           Visiting Artist: Undergraduate Critique, Video Art II, PSU, Portland OR
                   Visiting Artist, Criticism and Contemporary Indigenous Art, PSU, Portland OR
                   Public Lecture: Umeru, MFA Thesis Lecture, PSU, Portland OR
                   Public Lecture: Drawings in Digital, WSU, Vancouver WA
                   Workshop: Paper for Interdisciplinary Practice, WSU, Vancouver WA
                   Visiting Artist: Undergraduate Critique: Painting I, WSU Vancouver WA  
2012           Workshop: Pigments and Nature, Portland State University, Portland OR
2011           Public Lecture: Teach East Asia, the World Affairs Council of Oregon, Portland OR
2006           Workshop: Japanese Art, International Museum of Art, El Paso TX
                   Workshop: Japanese Art, The National University of Juarez, Juarez Mexico

Curatorial Practice
2015            Yuko:75th Saga-goryu Exhibition, Exhibition Design, Henjyoji, Portland, OR
                    Metamorphosis, co-curator, Scom Gallery, Portland, OR
2014            William Pope.L: Claim, Exhibition Coordinator, Littman Gallery, Portland OR
2013            Keiji Haino: Performance, Assistant Curator, Yale Union, Portland, OR
2012            TBA:12 (Time Base Art Festival 2012), Curatorial assistant, PICA, Portland, OR

International Museum of Art, El Paso TX
Tozai Capital Inc., Tokyo Japan
The Gallery Katze, Saitama Japan
The Run For The Cure Foundation, Tokyo Japan

Teaching Experience
2014-           Visiting scholar at University of Oregon, Eugene, OR
2014             Instructor: Experimental Drawing, Portland Community College (PCC), Portland OR
2013-2014    Instructor: Japanese Painting, Mt. Hood Community College, Portland OR
                     Instructor of Record: Intro to Painting (Winter), PSU, Portland OR
2012             Teaching Assistant: Intro to Painting, PSU, Portland OR
                     Teaching Assistant: Painting I &II (Summer), PCC, Portland OR
2005-2007    Full-time Faculty:2D and Digital Media foundation, Sakura Art Studio, Tokyo Japan
2004-2005    Instructor: Japanese Arts, Temple University Japan, Tokyo Japan
2001-2009    Instructor: Japanese Arts, Tokyo American Club, Tokyo Japan

Kirk, Atalanta. 70 Days In The Tent. 1st ed. Phoenix: Blurb, 2009. 90-91. Print.
"East Meets West at Art Museum." El Paso Times [El Paso, TX] May 2006, weekend n. pag. Print.
Tokita, A. "Smell of Tokyo." Asahi Shimbun (The Asahi Times) [Tokyo, Japan] Sep 2005, early ed n. pag. Print.

Published Writings
Takahashi, Mami. "UMERU" June 2014. Print
Takahashi, Mami. "Untitled 03.05.13." [STUDIO] Julia Dault. Mar 2013: 2. Print.
Takahashi, Mami. "Translation Project 2." [STUDIO] Olaf Breuning. May 2012: 10-11. Print.
Takahashi, Mami. "Translation Project." [STUDIO] Sarah G Rafferty. May 2012: 2-3. Print.