Artist Talk: Kisho Mwkaiyama


Oct. 15, 2018, 7pm to 9pm

Office/Remote Location

Barrick Auditorium MSM 135
Art display of pastel blocks hanging in a straight line


A minimalist who infuses light, color and Buddhist theory, artist Kisho Mwkaiyama arrived in Las Vegas from Japan to create a conversation between his aesthetic and the consciousness of Las Vegas. 

Join us at the Marjorie Barrick Museum of Art at 7 p.m. on October 15th to hear Mwkaiyama, the current visiting artist with MGM Art & Culture, discuss his process as an artist and the new work he is creating, Vendarta 100: Six Elements and the Seasons, while in Las Vegas. This artist talk is free. Refreshments will be provided.

In Esoteric Buddhist practice there are six elements that comprise our universe: earth, water, wind, fire, emptiness, and consciousness. Upon experiencing Las Vegas, artist Kisho Mwkaiyama felt that the traditional order of the elements did not encompass the sensation of the city. For his commissioned twenty-four-painting artwork, Vendarta 100: Six Elements and the Seasons, he decided to rearrange his representation of the traditional Buddhist order of elements for Las Vegas. The creation and exchange of new beauty is Mwkaiyama’s dream: “Because I believe that the world is surrounded by the two sides of light and darkness, by adding colors to the light and darkness in layers, with my mind emptied, I create my work with the hope and prayer that some new material would emerge in front of me beyond my consciousness.”

Born in Osaka, Japan, Mwkaiyama spent his childhood on Mount Koya, known as one of the most prominent locations of Esoteric Buddhist temples. This experience led Mwkaiyama to concern himself with the fundamental presence of light. While many of Mwkaiyama’s paintings are created using wax and paper, his latest work is made with a specially prepared gouache. Each material emphasizes the interaction between light and color as it is viewed through semi-transparent layers of material. He carefully overlays magnificently iridescent hues that are distinct to Japan in a minimalist way. Delicately faint, the color and quality create a majestic gradation of tones, through which Mwkaiyama illuminates our relationship to space and color.

Image Credit: Kisho Mwkaiyama, Vendarta 11 series, 2017. Courtesy of YKG Gallery.

Admission Information

This event is free and open to the public.

Cost: FREE

Suggested voluntary contribution:

  • $5 adults;
  • $2 child and senior.

Contact Information

Marjorie Barrick Museum of Art

External Sponsor

  • MGM Art & Culture
  • UNLV Marjorie Barrick Museum of Art
  • UNLV Department of Art