Mika Horie is a Japanese artist who is one of the few modern practitioners of traditional Gampi paper. In 2013 after completing her MA degree in London, she moved to Shiga, Japan, to practice this endangered craft hoping to discover the history and inherit the job of making all-natural papers using Gampi branches.
Her studio is located in the mountains of Kaga, Japan, where Gampi branches are accessible. According to Horie, the wild fibers of Gampi make strong paper with a “lustrous sheen and warm greenish hues.” Each paper that is produced by hand-pounding has irregular and distinct surfaces. Even though she claims that she is not trying to make new things, Horie innovates her own style by combining the traditions of Japanese papermaking and Western photography. She takes the oversize negatives of the pictures she took using the 8 by 10 camera, placing them on Gampi paper treated with iron salts, then lets the sun expose them directly on the paper resulting in cyanotype prints that can last more than 1000 years.
Indigo symbolizes the earth, plants, and creatures, which are part of the time that flows without a stop. In her studio, everything constantly and momentarily flows to the past creating layers of the past day by day. Horie tries to walk into this flow, capturing and contrasting timelessness and impermanence.
Mika Horie was invited to solo exhibitions including "Life is a Circle" at Kamiji Kakimoto in Kyoto, Japan; "Waterfront II" at Trace in Kyoto, Japan; "Kodamasuru" at Gallery Misyo in Ishikawa, Japan; and "B3-304" at Ouchi Gallery in New York, USA.
Horie's works were exhibited in numerous galleries and museums, including "Paper Positions" in Berlin, Germany; "NEKO. De kat in de Japanse Kunst" at Japan Museum SieboldHuis in Leiden, Netherlands; "WABI SABI" at IBASHO gallery in Antwerp, Belgium; "Photo Basel" in Basel, Switzerland; and "NEKO Project" at Galerie ARGENTIC in Paris, France, to name a few. Mika Horie was selected to be part of the "2018 Art Trail, power by Tesla at Unseen" in Amsterdam, the Netherlands in 2018. Horie's works are in the collection of Olnick Spanu in New York, USA, and she was featured in media: SAVEUR, USA; Financial Times, UK; PHOTOWORLD, China; and Ishikawa TV, Japan.