Art Minute

Her art is inspired by her heritage, but she's unsure about sharing it with her family

"I don't know if my grandparents really fully know what I do...I'm kind of scared to show them that, I guess."

'I don't know if my grandparents really fully know what I do...I'm kind of scared to show them that, I guess'

(CBC Arts)

Growing up between languages and cultures made Rachel Wada into a visual thinker when she still was a child, moving from Japan to China and then to Canada. Her Japanese and Chinese cultural backgrounds are a major influence on and theme in her art — but it also means that some of her relatives may not fully grasp her career.

Watch the video:

Rachel Wada on connecting to different aspects of her heritage with her work and her hesitation to talk about her art with her grandparents. 1:05

"My grandparents and aunts and uncles, a lot of them don't really speak English. I don't know if my grandparents really fully know what I do," she says. "I was kind of hesitant to talk about my art just because of their preconceived notions of what's success."

"I would love to just show them my website or a bunch of my work. I'm kind of scared to show them that, I guess."

Her art is driven by both a general curiosity about how people connect with work that looks aesthetically Japanese or Chinese and a personal curiosity about her own connections to her heritage. By putting her own spin on traditional techniques and motifs, she creates charming artistic tributes to her shared culture.

See more of Wada's work below or on her website.

(Rachel Wada)
(Rachel Wada)
(Rachel Wada)

Art Minute is a CBC Arts series taking you inside the minds of Canadian artists to hear what makes them tick and the ideas behind their work.