We visited Mizuki Nishiyama in her Hong Kong based studio to learn about her creative journey. Nishiyama is a mixed-Japanese artist whose vivid and multifaceted paintings, and drawings explore the fragile human condition. She draws inspiration from the East and West, bridging her Hong Kong, Japanese and Italian cultural heritage.
Embracing deeply personal experiences to craft each artwork, the artist’s ongoing relationship with anxiety and trauma has greatly influenced her practice. Painting and drawing is a chaotic yet meditative process for Nishiyama that allows her to make sense of the more tempestuous periods in her life.
The charcoal drawings presented exclusively on Her Clique by Nishiyama focus on the intimate journey as a woman. This is the artist’s first time sharing these sketches, allowing a glimpse into how she pieces her journey on paper.
“Charcoal on Paper is a medium that feels so much more intimate than paint on canvas. The approach is extremely rigid and immediate. I feel an urge to be more decisive when using charcoal. The hardness of the material, yet also the looseness of each particle that may fall with each stroke, the medium feels equally strong and fragile. These works are from my visual diary, and I feel ready to share that very private side of me.”
Nishiyama's journey as a woman takes into account the beautiful and the grotesque, the haunting and the alluring. Each work pays homage to the gentleness, ferocity, pain and excitement that comes with the female experience.
Click the video below to watch our interview with the artist.
Nishiyama holds a Bachelors of Fine Arts degree from Parsons School of Design. Her solo exhibitions include Shunga (2020) at Whitestone Gallery Hong Kong, An Exploration of Human Fragility: Love & Lust (2020) at the Tenri Cultural Institute of New York, and 脆い Moroi: An Exploration of Human Fragility (2019) at Greenpoint Gallery New York.
10% of the sales proceeds will be donated to I Am Womankind, an organization focused on providing multilingual and culturally-responsive support to survivors of domestic violence, human trafficking, and sexual violence.