Formless Form: Jimugai

Formless Form V:

The Calligraphy of Ronald Y. Nakasone 

September 18, 2021–January 2, 2022
Gallery 117

The tradition of calligraphy in East Asia may appear simple: writing words with a brush, ink and paper. However, these are used to give sensuous form to formless thoughts and emotions that reach for a profound wisdom. For over forty-five years, Ronald Nakasone has investigated the potential of this artform, following in the path of avant-garde Japanese calligraphy artists of the 20th century, such as his teacher Morita Shiryū (1912–1998), who influenced American Abstract Expressionist painters like Jackson Pollock and Franz Kline. This exhibition presents newly created works by Nakasone and explores key aspects of the art of sho (calligraphy), such as the aesthetic features to appreciate and how to “read” an image. At the same time, it provides insights into aspirational thoughts from Japanese, Ryūkyū (Okinawan) and Chinese cultures, as well as Buddhist, Shintō and shamanic spiritual traditions.

Related Programming
Check back soon for information about virtual programming in support of the exhibition!

Featured Image: Ronald Y. Nakasone (American, b. 1943), 舞 (mai, “dance”), 2019 (detail), ink on paper, 9 ½ x 6 ¾ in. Courtesy of the artist. Photograph by Shih-Chieh (Jerry) Hsu.

Featured Image: Ronald Y. Nakasone (American, b. 1943), 慈無涯 (jimugai, “Compassion is boundless”), 2021, ink on paper, 10 x 18 in. Courtesy of the artist. Photograph by Shih-Chieh (Jerry) Hsu.

Thank You to Our Exhibition Sponsors

SUPPORTING
Norma Landis and Rick Hoffman
University of Dayton

NATIONAL FOUNDATION SUPPORT PROVIDED BY
Japan Foundation New York

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