Artist Background

Miya Ando is an American artist of Russian and Japanese heritage based in New York. She exhibits in private homes and public spaces throughout the US and abroad.

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Her public works include her piece for ‘Bread and Life’ the largest soup kitchen in Brooklyn, New York. Miya was commissioned by the soup kitchen to create a piece for its nondenominational meditation space. Her work, a grid of 144 steel canvas squares, composes a visual symbol of hope. The piece, titled “Fiat Lux: Let There Be Light,” supports Bread and Life’s vision of giving strength and serenity to those who are battling an array of problems, including hunger, poverty, and related stress.

Miya has made the following statement about her work and background:
 
Ultimately I am interested in the study of subtraction to the point of purity, simplicity and refinement. I am Japanese and Russian, a descendant of Bizen sword maker Ando Yoshiro Masakatsu and was raised among sword smiths-turned Buddhist priests in a Buddhist temple in Okayama, Japan. My spiritual, familial, and academic experiences deeply inform every aspect of my work.

I come from a family who worked with steel for many generations, I approach the material with great respect and reverence. My intention is to put forth quiet and transcendent environments, which come from a place of sincerity and compassion.

I have been working on a series of non-denominational, large-scale public works for spiritual spaces; I see the piece as being a very important non-denominational, spiritual, transcendent work. I would apply my traditional metal-finishing techniques and put forth a work in a minimalist aesthetic. I bring my family tradition from the sword-smith turned Buddhist priests who raised me in Japan and my approach of reverence and compassion that I learned in the Buddhist temple I grew up in. Funerals and memorials were a daily part of my upbringing in the temple; I would execute this piece with a respect for universal beliefs and spiritual traditions.