Local Artist Chie Yasuda

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I first encountered Chie Yasuda’s work during the Beacon Hill Art Walk this past spring (such a fun event!). Chie had a great spot on Primus Ave, a tiny walkway interspersed with steps – basically one of the cutest locations you have ever seen. When we got to the top of the walkway, we spotted Chie’s work and were completely smitten with it. I had a chance to chat with her recently, and came away even more intrigued by her work.

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Originally from Japan, Chie moved to New York and later New Mexico, where she went to art school, she chose New Mexico because of the large artists community there, and because the amazing landscape was a pivotal inspiration for Georgia O’Keefe, one of her favorite painters. When her musician husband was accepted to the New England Conservatory of Music, they decide to make the move to the East Coast, and now live in Somerville. Chie took some continuing classes at RISD, and now works out of the Artisans’ Asylum in Somerville.

She uses several materials, primarily watercolor, gouche, metallic paint, powdered Japanese pigments, and origami paper. Her images of nature have a magical , dreamlike quality – with these Chie’s experience in illustration is apparent.

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I was especially taken with the large series using dots. These works inspired by the movements of the planets, as well as the ions and particles that make up our bodies and our world. By depicting the world on both an immensely grand and incredibly small scale, she aims to appreciate the beauty and wonder of the both of these extremes, as well as what lies in between. Each painting is built by layering, and the individual circles and shapes fit together into a swirling, dynamic flow – for Chie, this represents how individual people find meaning through the collective, and how meaning is found in interaction between people.

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Chie’s paintings always include plenty of white space. This is intentional, as she feels it lets the paintings breath and makes them feel less heavy. It was SUCH a treat talking with Chie and learning more about her process and perspective. If I had money (and wall space!) to spare, one of her works would have definitely come home with me. If you are looking for a unique artwork for your home, get in touch with Chie. She also works on commissions. You can find out more on her website and facebook page.

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Images Courtesy of Chie Yasuda.

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