Many of my childhood pictures under the age of 8 exhibited a signature furrowed brow, I was definitely a thinker, curious, determined, highly anxious and sensitive by nature, I never really fit in, even in preschool. My life has been a constant struggle to find my unique-voice and a balance between the constant flux of transitions, cultures, perspectives and a chemically mercurial brain. My imagination is my solace, my stability, when all else failed and was in flux.

The first time I picked up a Xacto knife was in grade school, helping my mother cut out card pieces for her shadow boxing crafts. The interest in cutting out things remained with me, planting the seed for my unique signature design style, that emanated from an assignment I did in 4th grade, evolving with articulate, detailed perfection over the years. The designs I create and cut out from Japanese hand-made papers are much like free association writing, a singular continuous-line from start to end, twisting and turning, without any breaks. I refer to this process as free association cutting, utilizing the Xacto knife to mirror the state of my being in the moment. An honest, and at times subconscious, expressive representation, free-flowing movement.

I have always been partial to acrylic paints, an introduction born from sheer convenience, and as I experimented more, I discovered the many properties of the acrylic medium, which in-turn opened hidden doors for countless applications and uses. I love the different textures, viscosity and layers I can create, depending on the piece I am working on, my creativity subconsciously guided by my life experiences: studying pottery in Tokyo during high school; utilizing collage as a way to deal with personal body image issues whilst in treatment for eating disorders; as well as my young career as a classical ballet dancer.

Creative means of expression and art became an important survival tool to me, a coping mechanism for living with a mental illness, which is a healthier alternative to self destruction, maintaining balance and well being is now second nature. To me, making art is just as important as taking my medication in the morning, breathing or drinking water to stay hydrated. It just is, and works for me.

Being born into a family of matriarch, traditional tea ceremony and flower arrangement masters and influential business men, my cultural heritage is almost genetically intertwined with my art, wether through color, pattern, or other composition.

At first glance, my work may not be easily categorized into something familiar that has already been done, as unique as life, my art pieces are my own personal truth, an intimate insight into the complexities of Being Marie Tomeoki.

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しかるに、私の作品はどんなカテゴリーにも属さない、不可思議なものであり、これこそが、私Marie Tomeoki(留置まりえ)自身の真の姿を現すものなのであることを解って頂きたいです。


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