Amos Eno Gallery, a non-profit, artist-run gallery in Bushwick, Brooklyn, is pleased to present Adapt Adopt, a solo exhibition by Nishiki Sugawara-Beda.

Adapt Adopt features work from Sugawara-Beda’s ongoing series KuroKuroShiro, translated to “black- black-white”; in Japanese. The title of this series is indicative of her process using Sumi, a traditional East Asian ink. With the distinctly rich and subtle tones of Sumi, the artist composes monochromatic yet colorful painted worlds in which the viewer can be immersed and commune with an inner, quieter spirit. In Adapt Adopt, Sugawara-Beda probes questions around “tradition.” Can we pinpoint the origin of any tradition? Are we confined by traditions, or do we govern and shape them with our own hands? This exhibition marks a turning point in Sugawara-Beda’s work where she is exploring these questions through not only the visual but the introduction of the aural.

Born and raised in Japan, Sugawara-Beda was steeped in a poetic Japanese aesthetic valuing symbolic interpretation over direct representation. It is from this lyrical, and oftentimes philosophical, Japanese sensibility that Sugawara-Beda creates. After moving to the United States and earning an MFA at an American institution, Sugawara-Beda’s Japanese sensibilities were in tension with a Western conceptual framework that often emphasized a definitive end goal. Adapting traditional ink to Western language and adopting Western language within her artistic practice that employs Japanese traditions, the tension initially encountered between these two cultures Sugawara-Beda now cherishes. The images are based on the artist’s negotiations with traditions she has experienced and the traditions she embodies.

Nishiki Sugawara-Beda is a Japanese-American visual artist focusing on painting installation, and actively exhibits her work in solo and group exhibitions and offers lectures nationally and internationally. Connecting across space and time, she experiments in ancient Japanese materials and techniques including Sumi ink, Kakejiku landscapes, and rice paper, to merge them with abstract and expressive forms familiar to the modern Western aesthetic.

Her works are in private and public collections including the Dallas Museum of Art (TX) and Dennos Museum (MI). Exhibition venues include the Spartanburg Art Museum (SC), Morris Graves Museum of Art (CA), Dennos Museum (MI), Amos Eno Gallery (NY), and Cris Worley Fine Arts (TX). Publications include New American Paintings, Aeqai, Athenaeum Review, London Post, Art Spiel, and WhiteHot. Awards including a Seed Grant, Diversity Fellowship, International Enhancement Grant, Idaho Arts Fellowship, Sam Taylor Fellowship, Tusen Takk Foundation Residency, and the Dallas Museum of Art’s Otis and Velma Davis Dozier Travel Fund have supported her artistic research.

Currently, Sugawara-Beda is an Associate Professor of Art at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, TX.