Jacob Hashimoto: Fractured Giants

October 29, 2022 – January 14, 2024

Using sculpture, painting, and installation, Jacob Hashimoto creates complex worlds from a range of modular components—bamboo-and-paper kites, model boats, and even Astro-turf-covered blocks.  His layered compositions reference video games, virtual environments, and cosmology, while also being deeply rooted in art-historical traditions, notably, landscape-based abstraction, modernism and hand-craft.  This exhibition is complemented by a large site-specific installation, The Fractured Giant, in Boise Art Museum’s Sculpture Court.

Jacob Hashimoto was born in Greeley, Colorado in 1973 and grew up in Walla Walla, Washington.  He is a graduate of The School of the Art Institute of Chicago.  He lives and works in Ossining, New York.  Hashimoto’s artworks have been featured in museum exhibitions internationally, including at MOCA Pacific Design Center in Los Angeles, Museum of Contemporary Art (MACRO) in Rome, Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) in California, Aaltonen Museum of Art in Finland, and the Crow Museum of Asian Art in Texas.

Organized by the Boise Art Museum

Jacob Hashimoto (American, born 1973), The Hashimoto Index I, 2017, 96 woodblock prints on Igarashi Kozo 450g, edition of 19, Courtesy of the artist

Rather than a list of names or topics, artist Jacob Hashimoto’s index is purely visual, a demonstration of different motifs used by the artist in his sculptural works. For The Hashimoto Index I, the artist created ninety-six woodblock prints that can be arranged into endless combinations of compositions.

With a kite form serving as his central organizing principle, Hashimoto creates complex artworks that range from large installations to small-scale prints. Hashimoto uses the circle, overlaid with two intersecting lines, as his primary reference to kites. In his installation artworks, the paper and bamboo kites hang suspended from the ceiling. In Index I, Hashimoto utilizes this form in conjunction with printmaking, to explore shape, pattern, and visual motifs on a flat surface.

It’s really a marker, for me it’s a marker of optimism and a kind of childishness. There’s a child-like quality and a sense of nostalgia because there’s also something about loss (the loss of the culture of those kinds of games) and the connection to nature (we don’t have anymore).”  Jacob Hashimoto

Image courtesy of the artist. Photo by Derek Zeitel.

Hashimoto_Gas Giant and Silence_Sheehan Gallery_2016_photo by Matthew Banderas

Jacob Hashimoto, Gas Giant Fragments and Silence, installation detail, Sheehan Gallery, Walla Walla, WA, 2016, paper, acrylic, bamboo, and Dacron. Photo credit: Matthew Banderas

JH Index1_Detail

Jacob Hashimoto (American, born 1973), The Hashimoto Index I (detail), 2017, 96 woodblock prints on Igarashi Kozo 450g, edition of 19, Courtesy of the artist

When I was a kid, [my father] used to build kites in our attic in Pocatello, Idaho. He was writing his dissertation, and he built these little teeny kites that he’d fly out his office window on, like, a spool of thread. His father had taught him to build kites, and they used to take chopsticks and cut them up and make little kites out of them, which drove my grandmother crazy because it was right after World War II. They were Japanese-Americans living in Denver. They’re poor and they’re taking the chopstick, which is the implement with which you feed yourself, and just cutting it up and trying to make it into a toy, which seems just like an illustration of bad behavior at the highest level! I had these stories that I remember about the kite, but had no experience building them… [So] I sat down and I started making these 18-inch-high kites, teaching myself step by step.”  Jacob Hashimoto


PreK-3 | Kite Flying by Grace Lin

PreK-3 | The Emperor and the Kite by Jane Yolen and Ed Young

K-3 | My Kite is Stuck! and Other Stories by Salina Yoon

All Ages | Kites for Everyone: How to Make and Fly Them by Margaret Greger

Printable Activity Sheet-2

Create your own artwork
inspired by Jacob Hashimoto

Other hands-on projects:

Grades K+ | KiwiCo DIY Kit: Fun with Flight » (Create your own kite and rocket)

Grades K+ | Essdee Block Printing Kit for Kids »  (available for purchase in the BAM Store)

Grades 5+ | Create and Decorate your own Kite »

Grades 9-Adult | Speedball Water-Based Block Printing Starter Set »

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