Boston-based artist Mariko Kusumoto creates clusters of delicate sculptures that look like they were plucked from the ocean. She crafts her underwater gardens from a combination of different fabrics, finding joy in putting together playful displays that will spark the viewer's imagination.
Kusumoto joins polyester, nylon, and cotton in an array of colors to make delicate figurines resembling coral and sea creatures. As a result, these fabric sculptures appear dainty to the touch and translucent in the light. “My work reflects various, observable phenomena that stimulate my mind and senses,” Kusumoto explains on her website. “I ‘reorganize' them into a new presentation that can be described as surreal, amusing, graceful, or unexpected.”
The scope of her works varies from individual figurines to arrangements of multiple fabric sculptures. In the case of the larger works, they capture the essence of a coral reef: bursting with color and diverse organic forms. “A playful, happy atmosphere pervades my work,” she adds. “I always like to leave some space for the viewer's imagination; I hope the viewer experiences discovery, surprise, and wonder through my work. ”
You can see Kusumoto's art in person at an upcoming exhibition at the Morikami Museum and Japanese Gardens in Delray Beach, Florida in November 2022. Keep up to date with her latest projects by following her on Instagram.