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Artist Talk: Michele Benzamin-Miki

  • California Museum of Art Thousand Oaks 1948 Thousand Oaks Boulevard Thousand Oaks, CA, 91362 United States (map)
Arc , Graphite and Sumi Ink on Paper, 2016  - Michele Benzamin-Miki  ,  CMATO's Featured Artist

Arc, Graphite and Sumi Ink on Paper, 2016

-Michele Benzamin-Miki, CMATO's Featured Artist

Meet Michele Benzamin-Miki and learn more about her work and perspective on what's powerful today.

Talk takes place inside exhibition gallery featuring Benzamin-Miki's award winning works.  Complimentary admission. Refreshments provided.



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What's powerful today?  

I believe power can be misused when it becomes power over others, even if benevolent. What I choose to view as true power is when it is a power with others, empowering, and bringing out the best in oneself and others; then we can get outside of our structures of power, social, economic, political, religious and so on, in order to create systems that are flexible, changing to what is useful for the times, and appropriate to whom it serves.

Each individual is powerful. Power ultimately is a capacity within us, a seed if you will, that awaits growth and expansion of our capacity to meet our lives and the challenges and obstacles of any situation with grace, ease and solutions. Most often these very difficult events of our life bring forth this capacity. When conditions are right or choices are made available to us, individuals can turn an external challenge around, whether it is environmental, social, political, and so on. I believe these structural systems do not have lasting power. 


Michelle's  art is  an intersection between East and West, Realism and Abstraction, reflecting her Japanese and North American heritage. She uses large calligraphic brushes with sumi inks on paper, moving from ‘point zero’ of inner stillness towards an expansive awareness, before or during the  creative process. Michelle  teaches  the non-violent martial arts of Aikido and Iaido Sword, in which she holds two fifth-degree and one sixth-degree black-belt ranking.  She is the Co-founder of Five Changes and Manzanita Village Retreat Center near Warner Springs, in  Southern California, where her studio is located, and where she works with clients and leads retreats.

Elevation  ,   Graphite and Sumi Ink on Paper, 2016  - Michele Benzamin-Miki,  CMATO's Featured Artist

Elevation,  Graphite and Sumi Ink on Paper, 2016

-Michele Benzamin-Miki, CMATO's Featured Artist

Selection of  Galleries and Awards

  • Solo Exhibition at Southern Nevada Museum of Fine Art, Las Vegas NV
  • Hammer Museum, Westwood, CA
  • Sunset Boulevard Billboard Display, Los Angeles CA
  • Brand Library Art Gallery, Glendale CA.
  • TAG Gallery, Santa Monica CA
  • Grey McGear Fine Arts Gallery, Santa Monica CA
  • Studio Channel Islands Black-box Gallery, Camarillo CA
  • Hud/Dab Gallery CA
  • MD Gallery, Los Angeles CA
  • Arc Gallery, San Francisco CA
  • Soma Arts Institute,  San Francisco CA.
  • Noel Baza Fine Arts Gallery, San Diego CA
  • Solo show at Infusion Gallery, Los Angeles CA
  • Soho Gallery, Studio City CA
  • Lark Gallery Online Gallery, co-ordinating with several group shows Los Angeles CA
  • Jarvis Center, New York
  • Awards for Best in show, first prize, and  honorable mentions at shows curated by Laddie Dill John, Jim Morphesis, Kent Twichell, Peter Mays.
  • California Legislature Assembly, Certification of Recognition for my art – 43rd Assembly district Mike Gatto.