The Art of Stephen Robert Johns

Costa Rica & Japan
A Cultural Exchange Arts Exhibition
September 2010

Curator, Stephen Robert Johns

Curator Statement

ZENTICA- A cultural exchange exhibition of photographers, video artists, painters, sculptors, musicians and performing artists representing Costa Rica and Japan.

Curator/artist Stephen Robert Johns, a part time resident of Costa Rica, and a frequent exhibitor in the US, Japan and Costa Rica, created the idea for this cultural exchange, influenced by his exposure to these artists, mainly through friendships and exhibitions in Japan and Costa Rica, beginning in 1997/1998.

ZENTICA opened September 01, 2010 at the Museo de Arte- Casa de Cuño, located in the newly remodeled la Aduana. This will be the inaugural opening of the Casa de Cuño exhibition space, and proves to be an exciting beginning for many exhibitions to come at la Aduana. The Museo de Arte Costarricense is very excited with having the opportunity to showcase these artists. The exhibition will run through September 30, 2010.

ZENTICA'S Livepainting & The Okagura Group is a special live performance, which officially opens the exhibition reception at the Casa de Cuño gallery space. This is a very special night- an artists' reception, a theatrical performance and musical arts performance from Japan, which introduced to the Costa Rican public 'Livepainting', a sumie ink painting performance by world famous artist Kazu Yanagi, dance, Kabuki theatre, and a musical performance of Taiko drums & the Aboriginal wind instrument, the Didgeridoo.

The Japan Embassy sponsored this arts exhibition, included within their yearly San Jose event- Semana Japonesa, including a catalog with (8) pages devoted to ZENTICA.

“As a curator and as an artist, I felt that both the Costa Rica and Japan cultures are so uniquely different, yet in many ways so similar, so vibrant, with people living in geographically confined yet majestically beautiful lands, bordered or surrounded by oceans, and so historically creative- Costa Rica influenced by their dramatic Pre Colombian and Spanish ancestors, and Japan, a country abundant with artistic tradition, classically influenced by it's Feudal past, both cultures now incredibly rich with history and inspired by a twenty-first century, new trend in the arts”.

Mr. Johns was compelled to introduce these two countries through their artists, their work, and establish a 'Costa Rica-Japan Cultural Exchange Group Exhibition of the Arts', based on his introduction of both cultures through his art and exhibitions in Japan, then in Costa Rica. It is hopeful that in November 2013, the Costa Rican artists exhibiting in the ZENTICA venue will travel to Japan for a cultural exchange exhibition, reuniting with the Japanese artists, at the Fukuoka Asian Art Museum, located in Fukuoka Japan.

Click here for ZENTICA Postcard
Click here for ZENTICA 2010 Catalog


  The Art of Stephen Robert Johns