Saya Moriyasu

Awarded 2023

Hello, I’m Saya Moriyasu, a contemporary artist fully immersed in Seattle’s vibrant art scene and exploring the beauty of central Washington, specifically Soap Lake.

Originally from Portland, Oregon, my father’s Japanese heritage and my mother’s farm upbringing wove a rich tapestry of influences into my life. Growing up with creative family members—choreographers, abstract expressionists, tea ceremony enthusiasts, and photographers—was magical! Our home was often a spot for many gatherings with artists and the Japanese American community.

During high school, I lived abroad in Japan, an experience that deepened my appreciation for the art and culture, which has only grown over the years. The influence of the Japanese indigenous religion of Shinto colors how I see the world.

In 1991, I proudly earned my BFA in Ceramic Sculpture and a BA in General Art, laying the foundation for my artistic journey. The summer of ’93 brought an incredible experience at Skowhegan School in Maine, where I honed my creative skills and pushed the boundaries of installation artwork.

Since then, I’ve been nonstop and enthusiastic, showcasing my art in museums, alternative spaces, and galleries. Being part of SOIL, an artist-run exhibition space in Seattle, for a decade was enriching. As members, we worked to create a venue for artists to create new works outside the commercial art world.

I find joy in sharing my creations at J. Rinehart Gallery in Seattle. I feel lucky to have a gallery that supports my vision of the world.

More Fellowship Recipients