Artist Statement

Hood River, Oregon based visual artist, art educator and muralist Michelle Yamamoto was initially trained in Graphic Design before turning to painting when she moved to Asia in 1988. She lived over 12 years on the island of Borneo, then Beijing, China, and Manila, Philippines where her deep curiosity of these widely ranging cultures also brought witness to extreme poverty and the desecration of the environment that are so prevalent in third world countries.

These experiences combined with her response to current events whether it be human rights activism or global pandemics, enriched her understanding of how art could be used to invite conversation as a doorway to try and make sense of it all.

Working from her studio and school, “Art Circle”, her paintings are known for imaginative story telling of the soulful journey we are on incorporating people and wildlife as subjects in a unique blend of realism and abstraction.

In addition to private lessons at Art Circle, she is presently head of the Art department at Hood River New School.

Her murals, reflecting Hood River’s rich local culture and heritage are on permanent display in Odell Oregon, at the Hood River Museum of History and Henkle Middle School in White Salmon.

Additionally, Michelle’s artwork is on year round display at “301 Art Gallery” in downtown Hood River, Oregon where she loves connecting with collectors and the art loving community of her fellow artist members.