EDWIN USHIRO: GATHERING WHISPERS is a haunting monograph that explores the work of Edwin Ushiro, whose atmospheric paintings recapture the ecstasy, wonder and dread that illuminated and shadowed the endless summer days of his childhood in Hawaii. With an introduction by Giant Robot founder and curator Eric Nakamura and an essay by Amanda Erlanson that delves into the cultural, historical and personal backdrop of Ushiro’s vision, and featuring 71 impeccably reproduced color plates, this deluxe volume provides a wealth of insight into the ethereal world of a gifted and enigmatic artist.


Edwin Ushiro's work resonates with the echoes of his boyhood in the "slow town" of Wailuku on the Hawaiian island of Maui. In his paintings, he recalls the sun-struck days of youth, when the world was fresh and magical, but also explores the eerie folklore indigenous to dark country roads and the boundless depths of the childhood imagination. While structuring his work around the narrative tradition of "talk story" native to the Hawaiian islands, he interweaves the uncanny obake tales of his Japanese heritage. Working in a unique mixed media technique which involves laboring in ink and acrylic over sheets of Lucite printed with assemblages of his more traditional drawings and paintings, he creates reflections on the past that are luminous and nostalgic, like cherished memories burnished by the passage of time. 

After earning a BFA with Honors in Illustration from Art Center College of Design, he worked in the entertainment industry as a storyboard artist, concept designer and visual consultant. More recently, he has exhibited in venues worldwide, including Villa Bottini in Italy, the Museum of Kyoto, the Portsmouth Museum of Art and the Japanese American National Museum. He lives and works in Los Angeles.

About the author

Amanda Erlanson is a writer, art collector and editor of the art blog Erratic Phenomena. She grew up in backwoods New Hampshire without electricity or television, her nose buried in dusty old books, where she discovered a passion for Golden Age illustration. While slacking off from her job shelving books in the art history library of Dartmouth College, she learned most of what she knows about art. After earning her bachelor’s degree from Dartmouth, she headed west to pursue graduate studies at California Institute of the Arts. She now lives in Los Angeles, where she divides her time between the entertainment industry and the art world, and delves into the hearts and minds of her favorite artists through her exhaustively researched interviews. Recently, she co-authored the books Andrew Hem: Dreams Towards Reality, Dabs Myla: Midnight Fantasy, Chris Berens: Mapping Infinity and Heroes & Villains, and contributed essays about Mark Ryden to his Rizzoli collection The Gay ‘90s and his massive Taschen monograph Pinxit.

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