Kae Sasaki

Home: Winnipeg, MB
Title: Viewfinder
Media: Acrylic, oil and goldleaf on wooden panel
Dimensions: 121.92 x 91.44 cm
Website: kaesasaki.com

Artist Statement

In my work I seek an imaginative revitalisation of the narrative and atmospheric potential of painting. I negotiate the ability of painting to create visual worlds that are both familiar and extraordinary, rooted in everyday corporeal and spatial experiences, yet taking off into the synthetic domain of image-signs. I begin by considering the composition and approach to colour, and I rework the paintings until they reveal unforeseen meanings that exist beyond any preconceived model. As the psychological component takes over, symbols and other elements are added to bring them forward so that the paintings would further open up in a multi-vocal way. The resulting conceptual conflict is perhaps what brings my work into focus, as the paintings become mysterious in a way that attenuates engagement. In this portrait of an 11-year-old bat mitzvah candidate, she is fully engaged with her past, present and future as her eyes gently meet the viewer through the viewfinder of her grandfather’s camera.


Kae Sasaki is a Japanese-born Winnipeg painter trained at School of Art at University of Manitoba where she received Alice Hamilton Painting Prize, Cecil C. Richards Memorial Award, Lynn Sissons Memorial Scholarship and Sculptural Experience Commission Award. Kae has been shortlisted in the Kingston Prize (2015/2017), the Salt Spring National Art Prize (2017) and the Jackson’s Open Painting Prize (2018/2019) and her studio practice has been generously supported by multiple grants from Winnipeg Arts Council and Manitoba Arts Council.

Curriculum Vitae

2012 BFA Honours, School of Art, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Manitoba
1999 BA German Literature, Rikkyo University, Tokyo, Japan

Solo Exhibitions
2020 I hear it well but scarcely grasp it, Ace Art Inc., Winnipeg, Manitoba
2019 I know a bank where the wild thyme blows, the Gallery in the Park, Altona, Manitoba
2017 Blue Vessel, Gurevich Fine Art, Winnipeg, Manitoba
2015 Required Reading, Gurevich Fine Art, Winnipeg, Manitoba
2013 Look/See, Gurevich Fine Art, Winnipeg, Manitoba
2012 In Praise of Shadows, Winnipeg Art Gallery, Winnipeg, Manitoba
Awards, Grants and Residencies
2019 Artist-in-Residence, Riding Mountain Artist’s Residency, Riding Mountain National Park, Manitoba
2019 CREATE Grant, Manitoba Arts Council, Winnipeg, Manitoba
2018 & 2019 Finalist, Jackson’s Open Painting Prize, London, United Kingdom
2013 & 2017 Individual Artist Grant, Winnipeg Arts Council, Winnipeg, Manitoba
2015 & 2017 Finalist, the Kingston Prize, Kingston, Ontario
2015 & 2017 Travel/Professional Development Grant, Manitoba Arts Council, Winnipeg, Manitoba
2017 Finalist, the Salt Spring National Art Prize 2017, Salt Spring Island, British Columbia
2012 Alice Hamilton Painting Prize, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Manitoba
2012 Cecil C. Richards Memorial Award for Achievement in Figurative Sculpture, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Manitoba
2012 Lynn Sissons Memorial Scholarship for Watercolour, University of Manitoba
2012 Sculptural Experience Commission Award, the Collaboration to Promote Art and Music (CPAM), University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Manitoba