Miya Ando is a conceptual artist whose Japanese lineage and Buddhist upbringing resonate throughout her creative practice. Half Japanese and half Russian-American, Miya is a descendant of ancient Bizen sword makers and spent part of her childhood in a Buddhist temple in Japan, as well as on 25 acres of redwood forest in coastal Northern California. She graduated from UC Berkeley with a degree in East Asian Studies before continuing her education at Yale University and apprenticing with a master metalsmith in Japan. In 2011, Miya completed two memorial sculptures for 9/11 from salvaged 30 foot-tall pieces of steel that had fallen from the World Trade Center Buildings. In 2015, Miya’s large scale artwork “Emptiness The Sky” (Shou Sugi Ban) was featured in the “Frontiers Reimagined” exhibition in the 56th Venice Biennale. Her work was also selected for the BWAC exhibition curated by Guggenheim curator Nat Trotman and, most recently, she was commissioned by The Philip Johnson Glass House, CT. By transforming surfaces utilizing chemical processes, akin to her Japanese swordsmith ancestors, Miya’s work relates to Zen philosophy, the ephemeral nature of existence and the transformative powers of artistic creation. A recipient of the prestigious Pollock Krasner Foundation Grant, Miya’s work is in the permanent collection of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) and has been exhibited extensively worldwide, including The Queens Museum, The Bronx Museum, The Worchester Museum, The Museum of Contemporary Art in Santa Barbara, The State Hermitage Museum in Russia, The Byzantine Museum in Greece, and The Newhouse Center For Contemporary Art, among many others.
Miya's ancestors were famed Japanese sword makers of the Bizen school.