Luna Ikuta: Unveiling the Beauty of Impermanence

Luna Ikuta is a multidisciplinary artist and designer practicing sculptural works along with digital and physical installations of transparent botanical gardens.

The Evolution of an Artist: Luna Ikuta’s Artistic Journey

Born in Tokyo and currently based in Los Angeles, Luna Ikuta’s artistic journey began at the prestigious Rhode Island School of Design (RISD), where she graduated with a BFA in Industrial Design.

While her initial interests were in engineering and architecture, a summer architecture course sparked her passion for art, leading her to the crossroads of design, architecture, and visual expression.

Having successfully transitioned from industrial design to fine art, Luna Ikuta has since then used her hybrid skills to sculpt spectacular creations, from working with resin casting and metals, to creating permanent installations, exhibitions, and site-specific projects that transform ordinary spaces into extraordinary, almost otherworldly environments reminiscent of underwater landscapes.

In October 2020, she minted her first blockchain-based artwork titled “California Poppy“, commencing her exploration of this technology as an artistic medium.

To date, Luna Ikuta’s repertoire includes a number of noteworthy projects and exhibitions including Eternal Garlands, City of Culver City,12 Months of Afterlife, Vogue Singapore; as well as Remember Me, Dynamic Art Museum, Milan, Shenzhen (2022), Art Basel Miami (2021)(2022), and CAFA Museum, Beijing (2023).

Embracing Impermanence: Luna Ikuta and the Aesthetics of Wabi-sabi

Luna Ikuta’s work embraces a philosophical underpinning of balance, a concept that echoes throughout her body of work. She draws inspiration from Japanese aesthetics, particularly from the principle of Wabi-sabi (侘寂) which embraces the transience of things, in other words, “imperfect, impermanent, and incomplete beauty”.

This ethos underpins her artwork, guiding her exploration of the fleeting essence of natural elements, predominantly flowers — a fascination ignited years back by the Diphylleia Grayi, a flower known for its extraordinary ability to turn transparent in the rain.

Accordingly, Luna Ikuta’s artwork often delves into the exploration of dichotomies: life and death, perfection and imperfection, permanence and evanescence.

Flowers, with their limitless diversity, offer the ideal conduit for this artistic exploration: by employing the natural forms of flowers as her artistic medium, Ikuta reinterprets their intrinsic beauty, inviting viewers to admire their transparent, intricate cellular structures.

In order to achieve this result, her creative process involves an inventive procedure of isolating the extracellular tissue matrix from the flower cells, shedding their color and chlorophyll until unveiling their translucent nature — following this initial step, the flowers are then submerged underwater to create enchanting aquatic landscapes, igniting a renewed interest in the interplay between art and nature.

By methodically extracting chlorophyll from flowers, Luna Ikuta reveals an unseen dimension of their existence: their unique structural allure suspended between the transformative phases of life, death, and rebirth.

This unique structural beauty is embodied within her artwork “Golden Poppy”, now minted in the Fakewhale Vault. 

Luna Ikuta: A Multidisciplinary & Ever-Evolving Approach

“The ways of expressing myself change with however I evolve as a person”

With Luna Ikuta’s body of work, one can discern a dynamic interplay of the tangible and intangible, the organic and digital — a manifestation of the artist’s relentless exploration and merging of various forms, from sculpture and installations to digital media.

Her underwater creations each illuminating a unique singularity of nature, a nuanced beauty, and profound sensitivity – revealing a transformative world where the fundamental nature of existence is profoundly realized, delicately suspended between life, death, and rebirth.

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