Marie Okuma Johnston

Marie Okuma Johnston (she/they) is a mixed media artist who creates in order to unpack her experiences navigating a world where she’s neither quite American or Japanese. She incorporates Japanese imagery into her artwork, tying in her love for Shinto/Buddhist folklore and customs together with modern society. Her artwork is done in bright storybook or cartoonish formats to create a familiar and comfortable feeling for the viewer while challenging them with uncomfortable subject matters around capitalism, modern day events, and systemic injustices. Within each collection, pieces are connected through their layers of storytelling but can vary on how loud or quiet they are to reflect the continuous shifts within our mental states as we navigate a complex and challenging world.

Marie was born in Kitakyushu, Japan and moved to Spokane, Washington at a young age. Three years later, she began spending her summers back in Kitakyushu, Japan. Marie got her B.A. in Cultural Anthropology and minored in Music Performance (Cello) at Western Washington University and got her M.A. in Student Development Administration in Higher Education at Seattle University. She began exploring her artistic interests through her community leadership with the Minidoka Pilgrimage Planning Committee and has since transitioned into her full-time art practice.


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About gallery110

Gallery 110’s mission is to provide dynamic opportunities to established and emerging professional artists in an environment that encourages creative expression, experimentation, and collaboration. As a nonprofit organization, the gallery fosters artistic and professional connections between its associated artists and the arts community at large through creative dialogue, the presentation of challenging and enriching curated exhibitions, public opportunities, and collaborative projects.