Julia Takahashi

(Santa Fe, New Mexico, United States)

Julia Takahashi

Julia Takahashi_Bosque in Winter-16 x 22

Julia Takahashi

Julia Takahashi_FLoating Landscape-16 x 22

Julia Takahashi

Julia Takahashi_Winter Landscape-16 x 22

Julia Takahashi

Julia Takahashi_The Village in my Memory-24 x 30

Julia Takahashi

Julia Takahashi_Going-24 x 30

Biography – Biographie

Julia Takahashi started her artistic career as a ceramicist, became a practicing architect and is now working in oil, collage, mixed media and sculpture.  She is a Happa with a Japanese father and a mother from an old New England family.  This background in the context of American race relations provided her with a strong grounding in the power of being a bridge between cultures. She grew up in Boulder, Colorado and now lives in the Nambe River Valley north of Santa Fe, New Mexico where she has her studio.  She has an undergraduate degree in Environmental Design and a Masters in Architecture and Urban Design.  She took some art courses during her academic years, but most of her training has been through apprenticeship, mentorship, non-accredited classes and her own study and practice.

Julia Takahashi débute sa carrière artistique comme céramiste, est devenue architecte et travaille maintenant à la peinture à l’huile, au collage, aux techniques mixtes et à la sculpture. Elle est une Happa, dont le père est japonais et la mère est issue d’une vieille famille de la Nouvelle-Angleterre. Ce parcours dans le contexte des relations interraciales américaines lui a permis d’acquérir une solide base dans le pouvoir d’être un pont entre les cultures. Elle a grandi à Boulder, dans le Colorado, et vit maintenant dans la vallée de la rivière Nambe, au nord de Santa Fe, au Nouveau-Mexique, où elle a son atelier. Elle est titulaire d’un diplôme de premier cycle en design environnemental et d’un master en architecture et en design urbain. Elle a suivi quelques cours d’art pendant ses années universitaires, mais la plupart de sa formation s’est faite par l’apprentissage, le mentorat, des cours non accrédités et sa propre étude et pratique.


Statement – Démarche artistique

I seek to find a balance between the ephemerality of existence and an American desire for action and permanence.  My work explores the Japanese aesthetic and philosophical notion of mono no aware.  A direct translation of mono no aware is “things of wow-ness!” but it is most often translated as “the bittersweet poignancy of things.” In the lineage of Hans Hofmann and Marc Rothko, I create dichotomies of luminescence and decay, of color and non-color and the use of marks and gestures that float over one another to create depth and to express my deeply felt sense of the layers that make up the world and our lives.

During my formative years, my family traveled frequently throughout the Southwest and Mexico.  In 1995, I chose to return to live in Northern New Mexico.  Much of my current inspiration comes from the storied landscape and villages that surround me. Daily, I watch the sun transverse across the wide vistas, the clouds form and reshape, the shadows short and long and at the end of the day the glorious sunsets that grace this part of the world.  At night, I seek out the Milky Way in our velvety black skies and I believe I have a special relationship with the moon.  I find a sense of comfort and peacefulness in this landscape.

During our visits to Mexico, I was able to see the original works of the great Mexican Modernists and I was particularly moved by Rufino Tamayo; he remains one of my favorite artists.  I am also influenced by Abstract Expressionism and although it seems contradictory, I aspire to paint like both Marc Rothko and Franz Klein.  Klein’s work is reminiscent Zen calligraphy; if I am ever so wise and “empty” I would be happy to make such deep and magnificent marks with one stroke of the brush.




View of Tuscany during our art workshops in Italy

Studio Italia Oct. 2021

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