Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Finlandia Gallery to present "Path of Particles" exhibit by Natsu

HANCOCK -- "Path of Particles," an exhibit of sculpture by New York artist Natsu, is featured at the Finlandia University Gallery, located in the Finnish American Heritage Center, Hancock, from Oct. 21 to Nov. 20, 2010.

New York artist Natsu is now featured at the Finlandia University Gallery in the Finnish American Heritage Center. She will speak at a reception in the gallery at 7:15 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 21. (Photos courtesy Finlandia University)

An opening reception for the exhibit will take place at the gallery from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 21. Natsu will speak at 7:15 p.m. The reception is free and open to the public. Refreshments will be served.

Sparkling, complex, and organic are words that only begin to describe the metaphysical bead sculptures of artist Natsu. Using small plastic beads that are strung together and woven in a labor-intensive process, Natsu creates sculptures that explore the origins, structure, and existence of the universe -- with a view to both the scientific and the mythological.

Natsu, Path of Particles (detail), 2010. Plastic beads and brass wire, 72 x 108 x 108 inches. (Photo © Teru Onishi)

For Natsu, the process of creating her artwork is infused with meaning.

"Beads are like atoms, the basis on which the entire world is formed," she says. "My repetitive primitive act in the creating process, stringing beads and weaving them with my hands into a complex web structure, creates an infinite pattern symbolizing the cycle of the world."

Natsu’s work probes the dualities of our world, from the harmony of the physical and the ethereal to the tension between natural and human-made objects.

"I follow the rhythmic, nearly-unconscious motion of my hands. It resembles natural growth -- as atoms (beads) arrange themselves -- or instinctual behavior, like a bird weaving its nest. My handmade, labor-intensive process of creation transforms time into art."

Natsu likens her creative process to an act of contemplation or prayer.

"Through my creation, I purify myself and trace and experience the mysterious workings of the universe little by little," she notes. "I am stringing and weaving my prayer, memories, and moments."

Natsu, Path of Particles, 2010. Plastic beads and brass wire, 72 x 108 x 108 inches. (Photo © Teru Onishi)

Born and educated in Japan , Natsu now lives in New York City. She completed a bachelor of fine arts at the Joshibi University of Art and Design, Tokyo. Her work has been exhibited widely in New York and Japan.

Natsu has also participated in many artist residency programs, including the Artist Alliance Inc. LES-RSP Residency Program, New York; the Swing Space Residency of the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council (LMCC), New York; and the Emerge8 Program, Aljira, Center for Contemporary Art, Newark, New Jersey.

Natsu is working with Finlandia University International School of Art and Design students this week, through Friday, Oct. 22.

The Finlandia University Gallery is in the Finnish American Heritage Center, 435 Quincy Street, Hancock. Gallery hours are Monday to Friday 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Thursday, 8 a.m. to 7 p.m., Saturday 12 noon to 4 p.m., or by appointment. Please call 906-487-7500 for more information.

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