Copyright Yanneth Albornoz

Yanneth Albornoz

© Copyright Maxime Peroz

Maxime Peroz

© Patrick Carpenter

Patrick Carpenter

Copyright Karine Guillermin
Copyright The Anng

The Anng



Karine Guillermin – Upopo O Hana Spirit

Copyright Karine Guillermin

What’s the moment that you like during creating? All phases of creations are important, I like when I start a new creation, but I also like it when it is finished. That means I can start anew.

Do you have sometimes doubts? Yes sometimes, it is every day that I build myself, that I look for an advance.

What is your most beautiful artistic moment? When I see a rising smile, sparkling eyes in every person who looks at my art.

I was born in France in 1975 and grew up in an artistic environment. My father was very creative and at the time was an advertising photographer. He helped me to discover photography and also painting. I created my first painting when I was a teenager. It was an oil painting.

While my creative spirit was born during this period, I initially ended up taking a more conventional career path in Marketing. For years, I focused on my job. One day, however, a chance meeting helped me return to the canvas and brush. I was 35 years old at the time. Returning to art was a bit chaotic at the beginning, dramatic even, I hesitated a lot.

There was a raw mixture of anger and joy when moving back to what had made me happy when I was younger. It took perseverance and patience to finally discover the pleasure that comes in accomplishing work, and to feel satisfaction in completion. It took a long time to finally decide to listen to myself and believe in this beautiful artistic adventure and to also travel.

I lived for a few years between France and Japan where little by little my inspiration grew and evolved. I had to learn and tame a different culture, which allowed me to open my mind and my heart. It was during these travels that my artistic vision started to take shape. I discovered that one must learn to continually examine one’s motivations and inspiration in order to grow.

Even to this day, I continue to build my practice through research, asking questions, reading, exploring artistic desires, crying and working through frustrations. For me, to create has become a need, necessary for expression. I need it to feel free and not locked up in this or that box, which society sometimes imposes upon us. It helps to direct my mind, to explore my inner and outer self and to try to understand what our human diversity is. I see it as a reconnection to our essence.

My work comes from my imaginary world, my energy and my personality. Kandinsky wrote that “the form is the outer expression of the inner content”. I take this to heart – looking at my creativity is a spiritual journey, a meditation, a break to the point where dreams and reality merge. I see it as a journey where the eyes are a door to the mind, an energy symbolizing our strength and our differences. We must know how to listen to our inner world, to know how to listen to our thoughts. My own universe is a large space where different environments mix, huge petals of flowers, aquatic molluscs strolling in the air, rainbow fireworks, tree roots. A carefully thought-out strange, dreamy, fresh and colourful world where shapes and harmony delight in the tiny details of the “microcosmic” repetition that is sometimes complex.

Over time I have created my own goals, my own rules that help erase boredom. When working I respect a code, a sense of colour, use of closed lines, a direction, keeping to multiples of three. This way my mind is always awake attentive, and at one with my creation.

Over time I have created my own goals, my own rules that help erase boredom. When working I respect a code, a sense of colour, use of closed lines, a direction, keeping to multiples of three. This way my mind is always awake attentive, and at one with my creation.

Today I live and work in Ho Chi Minh City – a new place, a new culture, with new inspirations, new challenges and new encounters, which has born new creations. A new me too. And from these experiences emerged Upopo O Hana Spirit, which means “The spirit of the sound of the flowers”.

It is based on a floral composition that is very colourful, enchanting and appealing to the senses. This is paired with an interior garden represented by thirty-one paintings and just over 6,000 pieces of ceramics. I’ve embraced a fresh use of colour as a sort of return to nature in my work. Upopo O Hana Spirit came about quite naturally.

It is a continuation of my previous work, my travels, influences, experiences and my roots. The title came to me first, a blend of the Ainou (Indigenous peoples from Northern Japan) word “UPOPO” and the Japanese word for flower, “O HANA”. Together they make a sweet singing blend of concept and sound. My artistic approach and my contact with the canvas is simply the continuation of my work. However, incorporating ceramic installation into my work is new with this project. I had to think about making an installation, I wanted to create a garden, but how? After much research and testing, I found ceramic the best output. I try to work as naturally as possible, by keeping the colours natural and unfired for the most part, each of the 6000 pieces unique.

My work is informed by my research and explorations but also is also intuitive. My poem Upopo O Hana Spirit is very much a journey into this intuitive process of creation.


The spirit of the sound of flowers

Is it resonant like the wind blowing a light sound as we walk through our body?

Is it a statement of the moment?

Is there the balance between two forces?



Where is the beginning?

Where is the end?

What does the flower represent?

Would she be,

A symbol of the ephemeral, a transient aspect

Symbol of fulfilment, renewal

Symbol of our inner world

Is there a relationship between body and mind?

Does it resound like silence venturing
into our minds?

The sound would not it be silence?

Is silence not our thoughts?


Do we lose control?

Suffering – Happiness?

What is suffering?

It’s becoming another person

It’s opening a new door to his personality

It’s getting lost on a path not chosen

Where everything is without light,
without colour

It’s a hope that does not come

It’s crying

And then silence





Breaking the darkness

To become happiness

Travel with us

Where the eyes are the door of the spirit

And where to look with the mind

An energy symbolizing our strength, our differences



The sound of silence becomes our thoughts so I listen to my thoughts

Duality or No Duality?


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