My most recent body of work is inspired by my return to Japan in Summer 2017, 10 years after studying abroad. I worked various jobs in exchange for room and board, traveling from the seaside town of Tottori, to the Okayama countryside, then Hiroshima, Osaka, and Tokyo. The project titled 'Itte Kimasu' consists of both small and large-scale canvas paintings, and includes paper works--drawings and scribblings--from my temporary houses overseas. 'Itte Kimasu' is a common Japanese phrase which means 'I go and come back." This phrase holds a deep meaning and connection to 'home' (wherever the return place might be)--despite it being so regularly and thoughtlessly spoken. These works are all visual representations of moments I leave and come back to, memories and experiences transformed into simplified imagery and symbols.
Sami Cronk is a Richmond-based artist creating mixed media illustrations, paintings, and handmade objects. She graduated with a BFA from VCU Arts' Communication Arts program in 2014. Since then she has worked as a freelance illustrator, visual merchandiser, product developer, and co-owner of a small handmade craft shop. Her drawings illustrate simple, day-to-day experiences and playful nostalgia. Sami's work attempts to capture brief moments onto a surface as quickly as possible. Her inspiration comes from animals, home life, people watching, and childhood. Her utilization of materials is minimalistic, focusing on color palettes, negative space, shapes, and simple media.