Because I am who I am


I was born in Shibuya, Tokyo in 1978.

I lived in Shibuya until I was 5, and then moved to Harajuku. I was born with a severe hearing disability, therefore, I naturally depended on visual information more than anything else. Non handicapped people tend to learn languages and words by listening to their family and friends speak. But soon, my mother and I figured that that was difficult for me to do.  So my mother took me to different places in order for me to learn the language.  For example, in order to teach me the word "mountain", she would take me to one and show me that this was a mountain. She actually took me to each place so I can touch and see and learn the words. She also took me to see a lot of movies too. The way my mother taught me, definitely helped me improve my focus on visuals.  


At this time, due to the rapid economic growth of Japan, many buildings were being built in Harajuku.  The grounds and fields I used to play on slowly disappeared one by one. I was still very young then, so I grew up with very little contact with nature.  But instead, there were great amounts of foreign movies and music that came into Tokyo at that time and I spent my time devouring them.


As I grew up in this kind of environment,  I became very attracted to visual arts.  In high school, I started to learn the basic sketches and drawings.  At the same time, I began to develop a lot of images in my head and I began to express my images as much as I can on a piece of paper.


I gradually became drawn to graphic design.  At this time in Tokyo, the culture scene in music and fashion created by young people were in its heights. Here, graphic design played a very strong role in connecting music and fashion. The posters, CD covers and Tshirt prints, were all constructed out of interesting information, and this all looked attractive to me as a young art student.


Soon, I enrolled in  KUWASAWA DESIGN INSTIITUTE, located in Shibuya, Tokyo. I wanted to learn the basis of design. Shibuya was at the center of young culture. I chose to go to this school because it had a very good design program and it was located right in middle of Shibuya.  I wanted to study graphic design in a place where I can feel the heat of the young culture at the same time. It was exactly what I wanted.


While I studied graphic design, I still continued to draw in my own pace. At that time,  Apple's Machintosh was becoming popular and video cameras began to take a digital shift.  It was a time when people were given the chance to make videos on their own.  The music scene was very hot at that time and Japan was in its period of music boom. There were tons of interesting music videos too. At this time, the interests I had, which was art, graphic design, and movie somehow all linked together. As I thought about it, the three genres were not all that different.  All of them were visual arts, and they all consist of lots of information.


As I continued my studies in graphic design,  I also continued to draw and make video clips and movies. I felt nothing wrong in continuing to create in three different medias.  I soon started working in the fashion industry, making image visuals. I made fashion clips for different brands. I soon became very busy with work but I still continued to draw in my own pace.


I continued this busy lifestyle for about 10 years, and I soon realized a sense of emptiness. I didn't exactly know what it was, and I drowned myself in alcohol every day.  A lot had happened and soon, my partner and I left Japan.


Our destination was Paris.


My sister was living in Paris for some time.  She was an artist there.

There was distance in our relationship somehow.  We had the physical distance, living in two different countries and also an emotional distance.  I was working hard in the creative field in Japan. To me, my sister's life as an artist seemed to be on the other end of the spectrum. I was never able to understand her stand point. 


Before I left Japan, I promised myself that I will use this time to take a look at my life once again. I felt that, in order to do this, it was important for me to take a good look at my family. I decided to make a movie based on my sister. However, it wasn't so easy to make a movie in a foreign land with people with different views.  On top of this I had to reconsider my life which made this period very tough for me.  In Paris, we lived in a place where there was a huge National Park right behind us.  This was the first time I lived in a place where I was able to come in contact with nature on a daily basis. This allowed me to sit and think about myself.


Moving from the concrete jungle, into a life with nature.

Tokyo, a place where new trend comes by everyday, to Paris a place where they value culture.  The two cities were on complete opposite sides of the pectrum from my eyes.  And this influenced my work greatly. Natural and organic motifs began to develop in my  drawings. And I came to realize that analog information holds so much more information than industrial and digital ones. They are more beautiful in structure and also enormous in size. Being brought up in a big city, I didn't realize the obvious greatness of nature and that we were a part of it.


I began to feel that a lot of my past works, movies, clips and artworks were fake.

But I couldn't figure out the truth either. I think that this was the reason of my emptiness I felt, when I was in Japan. 


The importance of creating work that comes truly from within. It sounds easy but it isn't. I'm still struggling but I'm happy that I was able to realize it. I also stopped drinking alcohol which I used to love so much.


After finishing the movie in Paris, I moved to Berlin. Now I am applying for different festivals and competitions for my movie while I continue my drawings.