The Oregon Coast Council for the Arts is pleased to present artist Yasmina Dedijer-Small in the Upstairs Gallery at the Newport Visual Arts Center, August 7 through September 5. In her exhibit, “Mooka,” Dedijer-Small presents gouache and ink on wood works that explore motherhood, introspection and patterns in nature. All works from this new series were created in 2015 and recently exhibited in the Bay Area. An artist talk will be held during the opening reception on August 7.
Yasmina Dedijer-Small currently lives and works in Portland, Oregon. She received a Bachelor of Fine Art from San Jose University and has exhibited at The Great Highway Gallery (San Francisco, CA), Wieden & Kennedy Gallery (Portland, OR), H Space (Costa Mesa, CA), The Grasshut (Portland, OR), The Santa Cruz Museum of Art and History (Santa Cruz, CA) and at La Kitchen (Paris, France). Her work has been published several times in Japan’s Blue magazine, The Surfer’s Journal, Salted and Foam Symmetry. “Mooka” is her third solo exhibition and her first at The Newport Visual Art Center.
Wake, feed, eat, embrace, change, dress, feed, sleep, wake, eat, feed, bathe, nurture, embrace, feed, sleep and repeat,” reads Dedijer-Small’s artist statement. “My new body of work is an exploration of these daily patterns of devotion, associated with motherhood, and the relationship art has with introspection. Both influences inform my art-making process which involves hours of repetitive detail using gouache and ink on wood. My inspiration is also found through the observation of the unfolding and sinuous patterns in nature. Within these patterns lies a universal language holding transcendent qualities.”
Yasmina Dedijer-Small’s art pieces often are displayed in groupings, which she calls “families.” She doesn’t consider a single piece complete until she finishes the family. One such family consisted of 70 pieces that communicated and blended together.
“For me, there’s something grounded in the wood, perhaps because wood is the material closest to nature,” Dedijer-Small says. “Being from the northwest, perhaps it’s contextual.” She also enjoys drawing on paper and has been recently working more in that medium.
“Dedijer-Small’s work focuses on repetitive shapes and patterns that create soft, hypnotic designs. Generally consisting of some sort of pastel gouache and ink details, arranged on various, rustic-seeming materials, each piece is delicate yet sturdy — much like a mother,” writes Laura Jaye Cramer of San Francisco Weekly.
Dedijer Small grew up in Venice Beach, California, but her family moved north during her teenage years and she graduated from Waldport High in Lincoln County, OR. After graduating from San Jose University, she spent over ten years living in the Bay Area before returning to Lincoln County, where she spent several years before relocating to Portland. In Newport, Dedijer-Small opened and operated a vintage clothing store. She and her husband, both surfers and outdoor adventurers, also completed a four-month sailing trip from Newport to New Zealand.
The Upstairs Gallery is open Tuesday-Saturday, noon to 4pm.