The Summer Fellows Program provides opportunities for high-achieving UArts students to gain meaningful experience in a creative field during summer break. Fellows are matched with a UArts alumni host, who invites them into his or her workplace to observe, engage, and participate in unique projects and programs. Here are their stories.
Michele Kishita! Painter, Sculptor, and Mixed Media Artist
I would like to take this opportunity to introduce the artist who hosted me during this wonderful internship experience.
Michele Kishita is a Painter and Mixed Media Artist living in Philadelphia. She recently graduated from The University of the Arts' Graduate program for painting. She is currently First-Year Writing professor at the University, and she also works with students as a counselor by helping them handle the problems college life throws at them. She describes this specific job as difficult but highly rewarding.
I had the opportunity to read the Michele Kishita’s master’s thesis. In it, I learned about the Japanese philosophy of beauty called wabi-sabi, American painter Milton Avery, and about the ideas behind American paintings of the fifties.
Wabi-sabi is an idea of beauty stating that the elements of time can only add to an objective beauty. This concept is very complex and is not limited to this definition. I am not even sure how accurate mine is but this wikipedia page seems to define it well. Professor Kishita was greatly influenced by the time she spent in Japan. This influence can be seen in her work through the beautiful, intrinsic papers she collages within her paintings.
Her interest in Milton Avery comes from a sense of calm evoked from his work. In her thesis paper, she tells a story of when she was teaching her class about the American 1950's. She taught the class that within this tense period of life for Americans, there was a need for a serene sense of calm that the artist of the time, like Milton Avery, delivered.
She notes this specific work of art.
Milton Avery, Offshore Island. 1958
I was fortunate to see this Michele Kishita painting progress to its final state.
Michele Kishita, Sudden Downpour. 2012
There is so much to say about Michele Kishita; I feel I am cutting myself short. To be continued? Perhaps a Biography?