Kaori Fukuyama

Murmuration (2022) is a site-specific installation made of three-sided picks and different type of dichroic films that reflect and refract light and cast shadows.

In the wake of artists like Robert Irwin or Ann Veronica Janssens, Fukuyama is interested in the properties of light. The variation in the density within the work, being brighter and more colourful on three identifiable points, was inspired by the global character of this very project. Indeed, Fukuyama was born and raised in Japan, she lives and works in San Diego, and this commission is embedded in Brussels, heart of Europe – these three locations forming an almost perfect triangle on the face of the Earth. More broadly, it represents the exchange of ideas, communication, movement and relationship across countries, cultures, time zones, people, generations, etc.

Its title, Murmuration, refers to the phenomenon that results when hundreds, sometimes thousands of starlings fly in swooping, intricately coordinated patterns through the sky. Though these birds will separate into small groups to feed, most swarm back together at sundown to participate in the murmuration. The name for this activity comes from the sound starlings’ wings make when they are fluttering together in one large liquid mass.

Murmuration is the third artwork commissioned by Panoptès to see the day.


Kaori Fukuyama is a multi-disciplinary artist from Kumamoto, Japan, who currently lives and works in San Diego, California. Her practice spans paintings, drawings, sculptures and site-specific installations that explore the interactions of colour, light and shadow. She works with a variety of materials including paint, ink, paper, textile, monofilament, acrylic and resin in pursuit of a deeper understanding of our visual perception.

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