Yoshi Nakano

Zen Calligraphy artist Yoshi Nakano. 

Tucsonans young and old will pick up brushes January 3 at Yume Japanese Gardens of Tucson to write their names and New Year’s greetings in Japanese characters under the eye of nationally-known Zen calligraphy artist Yoshi Nakano as part of celebrations to welcome 2015, the Year of the Ram. Nakano, who creates inspirational brush works and semi-abstract calligraphy that he calls “brush art meditation,” will also show participants how to create an image of a ram with a few deft brush strokes.

They can then compare their technique to Nakano’s award-winning art, which will be on exhibit at the Gardens January 3-17.

Born in Japan and a graduate of the Art College of Nagoya, Nakano has been practicing calligraphy since the age of seven. He has exhibited contemporary and abstract brush work in shows in the Northeast and Southwest, and his work is in private collections in New York City, Chicago, Santa Fe, Tucson, and California.

In addition to his work as an artist, Nakano teaches Zen shiatsu touch and Eastern preventive health care as founder of Zen Tribe Wellness. It is from Zen that he takes inspiration for his brushwork, producing his pieces by harmonizing mind, breath, and brush.

“The interplay of light and dark brush strokes allows for oneness,” says Nakano. “This unites the body, mind, word, and medium in the present moment, and instead of simply making art, it is possible to become a part of the art. It is a different kind of love affair.”

Nakano will teach his skills from 1:00 to 4:30 pm on Saturday, January 3. Admission to his workshop and to the Jan. 3-17 exhibition is free with regular admission to the Gardens. Paper, ink, and brushes will be available for workshop 

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