Hekiun Oda

eagle

eagle

Japanese calligraphy
16.54 x 20.87 inches
2021
$1,500 (with frame)

Chicago’s premier practitioner of Shodo, traditional Japanese calligraphy, Hekiun Oda was born in 1963 and grew up in Kobe City, Japan, a municipality which was known at that time for a large concentration of shodo masters. Oda began studying shodo at the age of 5 under Goun Katsura, himself a master, and continues studying with him to this day. He came to Chicago in 1990, and while working and continuing training with his teacher, he began teaching students in 2009. All the while he also presented solo exhibits and demonstrations at various venues and galleries such as the Japanese Culture Center, the Japanese Cultural Institute, the Kizuna East Japan Great Earthquake Disaster Photography Exhibition, the Chicago Cultural Center, and the Noho N55 Gallery in New York. In Nov. 2011 obtained a “Shihan” – the highest rank in shodo – in from Genshinkai, an association of calligraphers in Japan. Since 2018 he has been invited to collaborate with Grandmaster Yoshinojo Fujima (Fujima Ryu Shihan, Japanese Classical Dance) and performed at both “Revitalizing Tradition XII: Lines of Tradition” at High Concept Labs and “Summer Thoughts” as part of the Chicago Obihiro Exchange at the Hairpin Arts Center and more.

For Oda, shodo is a reflection of the calligrapher’s heart. He explores the beauty of this art form by re-imagining his encounters with life and nature in thin or thick lines and powerful or gentle strokes. It’s a highly intense moment when he is ready to move his brush because a stroke can’t be fixed once having been laid out.

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