Born in Tokyo, currently living in New York, Mayumi Ishino received an MFA in sculpture from New York Academy of Art. mayumi combines studio art practice, performance, directing, site-specific installation, and video, presenting her work in national and international institutions including: Exit Art, NY; Art News Projekts, Berlin; 3rd International Performance Festival, Indonesia. Awards include: Manhattan Community Art Fund; Immigrant Artists Project at the New York Foundation for the Arts; The Virginia Center for The Creative Arts; I-Park; Constance Saltonstall Foundation for The Arts; and HRH Prince of Wales prize.

I employ visual metaphors to distill complexity into simple forms, incorporating various mediums including sculpture, live performance, painting, video and sound. I am intrigued by how the self-imposed restraint to limit information can both guide the creative process and public discourse. While metaphor is essential in my conception and process, my focus is not primarily on the ideological but on the sensory, aesthetic experience at a primal, physical level. Studio art practice keeps me grounded through the use of formal qualities such as light and shadow, scale and composition. My inspirations come from experimenting with various materials that surround me in daily routine. This practice is the backbone of my theatrical presentation. Much of my performance work employs methodical repetition. I commit myself and my performers to submit to task-based action, to attend to each step, to blow a horn or to pour out water. Within a strictly defined structure, there is freedom from mundane psychological preoccupations. The more the performer removes the sense of self but just pursues the action, the more the audience responds. Our contact strengthens. I am eager for this dialogue.

Coming soon.

To inquire about other works, please contact Mayumi.

Pierogi Flatfile at Pierogi, Brooklyn, NY

Artists File Online at Artists Space, New York, NY

Artist Registry at NURTUREart in Brooklyn, NY


At IS143, New York, NY USA
Partly funded by NYC Department of Cultural Affairs, administered by Lower Manhattan Cultural Council

Interdisciplinary performance art presented in Washington Heights, New York.

Duration: 40 minutes.

Conception, direction, & installation: Mayumi Ishino
Live music improvisation: David Smooke
Video Art: Karl Nussbaum, Dahlia Fischbein
Animation: Max Lust with Mayumi Ishino
Performance: Mayumi Ishino, David Smooke, Lauren Holstein, Khan and Meagan, Alejandro Acierto, A.O'Ceatharnaigh, Dahlia Fischbein
Technical Support: Don Hager, Matthew D'Agostino
Documentation: Matthew D'Agostino, Robert Heffernan, Richard Eitkin

"... Although a continuous flow of images and ideas, it is far from linear and provokes laughter, wonder, and deep thought about the fine line, if any, between art and life." - Krista Saunders, Independent Curator


At 320 Studios, New York, NY USA

Interdisciplinary performance comission for Financial Corps fundraising event. Inspirations: Intersection of various lives. Constrution and deconstruction.

Duration: 20 min.
Conception & direction: Mayumi Ishino
Live music improvisation: Alejandro Acierto
Video Art: Karl Nussbaum, Dahlia Fischbein, Mayumi Ishino
Performance: Mayumi Ishino, Alejandro Acierto, Lauren Holstein, Dahlia Fischbein, A.O'Ceatharnaigh
Technical Support: 320 Studios NYC
Documentation: Bruce Kennedy, Dahlia Fischbein

" was disheartning to see the scene destroyed but uplifting to know that something else will be created again." - Joe Schiavo, Summer Consulting Associate, Financial Corps


At the virginia center for the creative arts, Amherst, VA, USA

Outdoor interdisciplinary performance
Duration: 20 min.
Conception & Production: Mayumi Ishino
Video art: Karl Nussbaum
Live music improvisation: David Smooke
Sound effects: David Smoke, Karl Nussbaum, Mayumi Ishino
Performance: Mayumi Ishino, Eileen Cubbage
Technical support: Don Hager, Peter Krebs


At I-Park, East Haddam, CT

Outdoor installation and performance in the forest.

Duration 20 min.
Conception, direction, installation and performance: Mayumi Ishino
Improvised electronic sound system: A.O'Ceatharnaigh
Technical Support: John Discola
Documentation: Michael Higgins, A.O'Ceatharnaigh


Ongoing live audience performance project.

I stand in front of a mirror. Eyes stand out first. I notice the shape of the mouth, the opening width of it. Nose shows the tilt of the face most significantly. Hair obstructs the outline, so I lift it to see contour. I tilt my head further, to check if everything is at the right angle. I move to the side, or squat down a bit, so that I can see what I’m drawing on the mirror. The surface is very shiny and my pens are semi‐transparent. From an angle, I try to confirm if what I have drawn matches what I think I see. Then I bring myself back to the original position, the ‘right’ position. I start to see the colors. Cold or warm. Mat or Shiny. place the dark lines. finalize the image. And Shatter.

material: 12"x12" mirror mounted on canvas, markers, hammer

"...a satisfactory cross between a zen ritual and some fluxus fun" - bryant rousseau, artinfo


Live performance. To be repeated over and over during the exhibition. I build a meticulously perfect geometric structure that surrounds me and appears to trap me inside. Once the structure is complete, I come out of it at once using only the force of my body. Once outside of the structure, I rush to clean it up and start building it again from the dismantled structure. Each construction takes about 15-20 minutes.

Material: wood and spot light


Water is essential element in our existence. I draw surrounding people and objects as well as trees to represent the nature, only using water and a brush.

Material: bamboo stick, brush, water, jar


Live performance in the window space on busy street in NYC. I walked extremely slow motion as in Buddhist meditation (3-4 min. to cross 8 feet seesaw) back and forth on top of seesaw for the 3 day group performance event at Exit Art, NY, NY.

Material: wood, pipe, bells


At Mazer Theater at Education Alliance, New York, NY USA

Interdisciplinary performance art.
Duration: 25 min.

Curator: David Gibson
Conception & direction: Mayumi Ishino
Video art: Mayumi Ishino, Dahlia Fischbein
Performance: Elliot Golden, Chizuko, Mayumi Ishino, A.O'Ceatharnaigh, Naoko Yoshizumi
Live piano improvisation: Naoko Yoshizumi
Technical support: Education Alliance


At Exit Art (as part of the Performance in Crisis series), New York, NY

Multimedia live performance. A live goldfish in a clear glass bowl is placed on a pedestal at each end of the space. Two performers mirror the same action repeatedly: one takes a cup of water from bowl A and pours it into bowl B, and the other does the opposite. In the center, the third performer walks in a large circle repeatedly. She is blindfolded and carries a live fish in a bowl. She dips her feet in this bowl making her footprints on the concrete floor. A 5 minute audio-visual file is projected on a wall and repeated throughout.

Duration: 40 min.

Conception & direction: Mayumi Ishino
Video and sound: Mayumi Ishino
Performance: Shuhei Kinoshita, Laura Lamp, Mayumi Ishino
Technical Support: Exit Art staff
Curator Papo Colo, Jeanette Ingberman
Assistant Curator: Herb Tam

Video coming soon.

Video coming soon.

Video coming soon.