Born and raised in Tokyo, Ari Tabei received her BA from Sophia University in 1997. Traveling back and forth between Tokyo and the United States, she attended the Post-baccalaureate Program in Studio Art at Brandies University in 2001 and received her MFA from the University of Connecticut in sculpture and video performance art in May 2007. She has participated in several residencies including the Vermont Studio Center and LMCC's Swing Space in 2008. She was awarded the A.I.R. Gallery Fellowship 2008-2009.
I make garments to nest my own home, my own little world. I cocoon inside the garments to heal and nourish myself so that I regain strength to survive when I emerge from the garments. Interacting with the garments I invent ritualistic play that revives my childhood experiences and interprets the influences of my culture. In my current series of garments, I use different materials and processes to explore specific meanings. With these materials, I package my body to disconnect myself from reality, but also to tie myself down to it. Using video, I record my ritualistic play, exposing my struggle and desperate hope to get through today.