Yoshi Kitai Awarded Golden Spot Residency at Crows Shadow

April 05, 2019

Big congratulations to alumnus and printmaking faculty member Yoshihiro Kitai who has been awarded a 2019 Golden Spot Residency at Crow's Shadow along with Yoonhee Choi and Natalie Ball. Funded by the generous support of The Ford Family Foundation, the annual Golden Spot Awards began at Crow’s Shadow Institute of the Arts (CSIA) in 2010 to support regional artist residencies. Each of these Oregon-based artists will spend two weeks at Crow’s Shadow developing limited-edition prints, which will be hand pulled by Crow’s Shadow’s collaborative master printer, Judith Baumann. The final prints will enter our permanent collection; in previous years prints from the Golden Spot residencies have travelled extensively to galleries and cultural institutions around the region and nationally. All three of these artists will be working in the Crow’s Shadow studio for the first time.

Yoshihiro Kitai is an Assistant Professor of printmaking at the Pacific Northwest College of Art in Portland, Oregon. Originally from Osaka, Japan, Kitai moved to the United States in 1994 after studying at Tajimi Ceramic School in Gifu. Kitai holds a BFA in Printmaking from the Pacific Northwest College of Art (2002) and received his MFA in Printmaking and Drawing from Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri in 2004. Kitai is represented by Froelick Gallery in Portland. Kitai will be an Artist-in-Residence at CSIA during August 2019.

Kitai primarily makes work on paper, using drawing, painting, and printmaking, combined with the sensibilities of practice and repetition he learned making pottery. He frequently uses a Japanese type of pigment similar to watercolor called gansai, creating tiny dots or brush strokes meditatively repeated into seas of rhythmic patterns. He emphasizes surface and material contrast by using passages of gold or silver leaf which evoke the stylized clouds of traditional Japanese screen paintings. The shimmering metallic surfaces pulse between foreground and background, leaving openings later filled in with delicate, undulating points of pigment. A limited color palette highlights the subtle shift in gradients as the paint in each brush stroke fades after its initial saturation. The resultant works feel simultaneously restrained and joyful, eliciting a sense of orderly quietude.