The Hot Springs National Park Sister City Foundation is currently hosting an artist from Hanamaki, Japan as a part of the first Sister City Artist Exchange. Takuya “Taku” Onozaki arrived in Hot Springs April 16 and will be in the area for one month. Not only an accomplished artist, Onozaki is also the facilitator at the Runbini Museum of Art, an art facility dedicated to supporting disabled persons in Hanamaki. Onozaki’s artwork features both large abstract oil paintings as well as very finely etched printed pieces. The public will have several opportunities to see his work while he is here.
Onozaki and Hot Springs artist Gary Simmons will be featured artists at an event in Hot Springs Village sponsored by Lifelong Learning Institute on April 23. Onozaki, Simmons and area musicians will present a preview of Arts & the Park, the 10-day arts festival that begins April 27 and features more than 70 arts events in and around Hot Springs. The Arts & the Park preview will be held at 2 p.m. at the Unitarian Universalist Church in Hot Springs Village. For more information about LLI or this event visit their website at www.hsvlli.org.
Onozaki will be a featured artist during Arts & the Park with his work being on display at Emergent Arts, located at 341 Whittington Avenue. Visitors can stop by his studio for live demonstrations during Arts & the Park Studio Tours on April 28-29, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. Onozaki will participate in artist and youth Plein Air Paint-out events on May 1. During Gallery Walk on Friday, May 4, 5 p.m. – 9 p.m., his work will be on display and he will talk about his process and inspiration. He will be demonstrating at Art Springs, the outdoor arts festival at Hill Wheatley Plaza held May 5-6. For more information about Arts & the Park events visit www.hotspringsarts.org.
Workshops are planned at Abilities Unlimited and First Step, where Onozaki will lead participants using techniques that he uses in working at Runbini. In 2015 when the Hot Springs delegation had the opportunity to visit Runbini, several members of the group purchased beautiful pieces of artwork as souvenirs from their trip.
Onozaki is in Hot Springs in order to share his art with the artists and people of Hot Springs and to learn about the area’s arts and culture. Those interested in hosting him during his stay or would like to suggest opportunities for him while he is in the area can email firstname.lastname@example.org.
In June, Hot Springs artist Erin Holliday will travel to Hanamaki representing Hot Springs in the 25th Anniversary Art Exchange. After she returns she will be able to share her experiences with the Hot Springs arts community through her work at Emergent Arts. She will also create a piece of art inspired by her Japan experiences to present to the City of Hanamaki as part of Hot Springs 25th Anniversary gift.