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Meditation on the Purpose of Art Making

In my works, I attempt to capture some of the narratives that I heard from first-hand accounts while volunteering on Lesvos Island in Greece in December of 2016. What I’ve discovered thus far, is that the refugees are from all around the world, rather than only being from Syria as depicted in the media. I have also come to discover that the news coverage on the topic is often sensationalized, and even sometimes re-enacted for the sake of reporting. The stories of the local villagers and the volunteers seem often forgotten or ignored, and the refugees are used in narratives that sometimes are simply not true. More importantly, I wish to capture the humanitarian tale amongst this crisis, hoping that in turn, my viewers can be inspired to assist refugees or anyone who has suffered a great loss due to manmade or natural disasters.


Jave Yoshimoto


Jave Yoshimoto received a BA from University of California Santa Barbara, MA in Art Therapy from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and an MFA from Syracuse University. He has worked as an art therapist/mental health professional in Chicago, a painting instructor at Syracuse University, and a teaching artist in Seattle. Yoshimoto has served as an artist-in-residence at Art Farm Nebraska, The Art Students' League of New York, Vermont Studio Center, Kimmel Harding Nelson Center for the arts, Jentel Foundation, Teton Artlab, and as a fellow at Union Center for Contemporary Art and Tulsa Artist Fellowship. Yoshimoto has published in Guernica, Chicago Tribune, Huffington Post, and New American Paintings. He received a letter of recognition from the Friends of the United Nations and had solo exhibitions in New York, California, Illinois, Texas, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Oregon, Tennessee, and Washington, and group exhibitions nationally and internationally. Yoshimoto currently is Foundations Coordinator and Assistant Professor of Art at the University of Nebraska at Omaha.