When I received the artist information for the “Body Map" exhibition, I was not sure exactly what I wanted to do. Then, the more and more I thought about it, the more I did not want to do. You see, it required exposing myself to others and that was more than I wanted to tackle. But as fate would have it, I slowly began the process of thinking about my BODY through my life in Japan and in America. I also thought a lot about the MAP as geography which has molded my body.
When I was growing up in Japan I was always very conscious about my body; especially when I entered my teenage years and my breasts had started to become bigger. Most Japanese women have very small chests and I knew that my mother was trying very hard to hide my large chest. I also had big legs and that was not very good either. I wore over-sized clothes to hide these facts and that too made me overly conscious about my body.
"When I arrived in America, I was overjoyed to find a brassiere that actually fit me."
But once again, I became just as conscious as I was in Japan due to the fact that often people would make comments like "I thought Japanese women had flat chests." or "You sure do have big legs." This did not help me.
So, I decided to face my BODY. Which is why in my Body Map I have created ME, a life size doll without clothes.
While working on this project, I have come to realize that part of me will be always in Japan and part of me is in America.
I might have a BODY that is not a typical Japanese women's but I am glad that I am me.
I am still on my journey to find ME.
At least, I won't have to hide behind over-sized clothes anymore.
Terumi grew up in Tokyo, Japan, surrounded by the natural beauty of her native land and stimulated by the craft work of the local artisans. While still a young child, Terumi was encouraged by her parents to pursue her interests in music, dance, and the visual arts. Later moving to the San Francisco, California to continue her education. She has participated in many art exhibitions, juried shows, and the National Black Art Festival. Terumi continues to explore art in as many different forms of media as posible, in her continued commitment to expressing harmony in visual, performance art, and ethnology.