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A Day With: Rie Kono

Rie Kono is an established Japanese artist with a great imagination. Her incredibly detailed paintings depict fantastical scenes full of hot air balloons, curious characters, and odes to nature. These stunning, rich works are a testament to her unique aesthetic as well as her technical accomplishments. Recently, Kono sold her painting Man’s Dream, Woman’s wish and this scene to a collector in Dubai for a record site price of $40,000, making it the most expensive artwork to be sold on Singulart. We congratulate Kono for this impressive sale and spoke with her to discover more about her artistic practice and daily routine.

Hello Rie! What’s the first thing you do when you wake up in the morning?

I give food to my cat around 5 in the morning. My cat gets up early so I wake up with him or I get to have the ultimate late sleep.

What inspires you to create every day?

I am inspired by time: the time to make a meal and eat it, the time to think and draw, the time to talk with friends on the phone and enjoy the reverberations.

What does your work space look like?

The corner of the room smells like sea breeze. Especially in winter, the sun is too strong.

Describe the core of your technique or style.

I put a lot of my loved ones and feelings into my paintings.

What are your top 3 studio essentials? 

I do not have a ritual, but look at the sky while I paint and sometimes sing a song.

How do you know or decide when an artwork is finished?

It is strange to know when an artwork is finished, but it is just an intuitive feeling when I know the painting is okay.

Rie Kono, Man’s Dream, Woman’s wish and this scene (2010)

What do you like to do to unwind after a day’s work?

In my case, I like to relax and have a good night’s sleep.

What’s your overall favorite aspect of the creative process?

I like the order of painting. First, I create the sky and then the ground and people. Finally, I enjoy the laughter and joy that comes with painting. I love this world and that’s why I like painting it!

Thanks Rie! You can see more of her fantastical paintings on her artist profile.

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