Kimura Yumi with Hada Yoshiko "I was waiting to meet you"

By two artists selected for the International Bologna Children's Book Fair, Illustrators Exhibition, Italy

June 6 - 16, 2024
1-7 pm

Closed on Mon and Tue.
*reception:June 8, 5-7pm
*Anyone can participate in the reception.

Shimokitazawa Arts is pleased to announce " "I was waiting to meet you" by Kimura Yumi with Hada Yoshiko, who were selected for the International Bologna Children's Book Fair, Illustrators Exhibition, Italy.
The International Bologna Children's Book Fair, Illustrators Exhibition is an annual competition for original picture book illustrations held at the Bologna Children's Book Fair, the world's only international trade fair specializing in children's books, which has been running since 1964. Many illustrators from around the world submit their works, which are judged fairly by a panel of judges who are experts in picture books. In 2023, there were 4,345 applications from 91 countries and regions, the largest number ever.
We would like to introduce two talented artists who were successfully selected for the international competition. Kimura Yumi (selected in 2023) makes use of watercolors to create works that convey vitality and emotion, and Hada Yoshiko (selected in 2021) creates pop expressions with free lines and shapes. Although their styles may seem different at first glance, they have something in common: colorful, sophisticated coloring, and animals as their main motifs. Above all, both artists are more surprised and moved by the coincidences that occur on paper than anyone else. I believe that their pure enjoyment of the production itself is conveyed through the work, and that it naturally brings a smile to the faces of those who see it.
Please come and meet and chat with the creatures that Kimura Yumi and Hada Yoshiko have encountered. We look forward to your visit.

Kimura Yumi

The painting is completely self-taught.
However, due to various reasons, I work as a digital illustrator.
I started painting watercolors in 2022 in my own way,
and recently started using oil pastels.

Artist statement

It's like putting down art supplies and waiting with excitement to see what will happen.
It feels like I'm experimenting.
They blur, spread, fade, and overlap.
Excitement created by chance.
These children were born from that process.
These newborn babies speak in small voices.
Finally, I scoop up the words and write them down.

Favorite artists:Arai Ryoji, mirocomachiko, Robert Coutelas, Josef Wilkon, Mirko Hanak, Inga Agneta Flock etc.


Solo Exhibition "Small paintings of creatures and small voices" TOUCH & FLOW, Nihonbashi Takashimaya S.C., Tokyo
Solo Exhibition "Creatures" GALLERY NEUNEU, Hyogo pref., Japan
"Bologna Children's Book Fair Award Exhibition World Tour" Itabashi Museum, etc... 

"HOTEL VILHELMS × YORK." Isetan Shinjuku, Tokyo

2023 Bologna Children's Book Fair Illustrators Exhibition, Winner, Italy

Kimura Yumi《Already my heart is spring.》2024, watercolor on paper
Kimura Yumi《The day I tried different eyeliner and lipstick. I'm curious about everyone's reactions.》2024, watercolor on paper
Kimura Yumi《Difficult, isn't it? But enjoyable.》2024, oil pastel on paper

Hada Yoshiko

Artist statement

There are no rules in my drawings. I draw pictures while being surprised and moved by the coincidences that happen on paper. It may be similar to the innocent joy a child feels when touching clay for the first time. These slightly strange creatures born through my hands out of nowhere, beyond my consciousness, are like an extension of a child's doodles, like music, or like alchemy to make something wonderful out of the monotonous daily life. 

I hope that people saw my artwork will feel like children and open their hearts and minds.


Dropped out of the Visual Communication Design Department at Musashino Art University. Freelance illustrator living in Tokyo. With the motto that graphics have the power to change something, She provides illustrations for a wide range of media, including magazines, pamphlets, CD/DVD jackets, packages, miscellaneous goods, and textiles, both domestically and internationally. She also has a wide range of activities, including actively participating in overseas exhibitions, workshops, and conferences.

Favorite artists:Joan Miro, Ikeda Masuo, Bill Traylor etc.

Recent selected exhibitions

Solo Exhibition "Life is Wonderful" JIKE STUDIO, Kanagawa, Japann
"Le immagini della fantasia" Stepan Zavrel Museum, Italy
"When everything matters-world tour" Buchmesse, German
"Hello from 2021 bologna friends" Morino Machiya, Tokyo
"When everything matters-international poster exhibition" Arsenal Museum, Ukraine
Solo Exhibition"Strange Groove" Shimokitazawa Arts, Tokyo
"Bologna Children's Book Fair Award Exhibition World Tour" Itabashi Museum, etc... 
"International Poster Exhibition" Arsenal Museum, Ukraine
"Les 24 Heures du Mans s’afficiant" Several place, France
"ILUSTRARTE2018 Award Exhibition" Centro de Cultura Contemporânea, Portugal

And more


2024 MJ award, Silver Prize & Jury Prize, Japan
2021 Bologna Children's Book Fair Illustrators Exhibition, Winner, Italy
2018 ILUSTRARTE2018 (international competition in Portugal), Winner
2016 200th The Choice, Winner, Japan
2015 13th TIS Competition, Winner
2010 11th Illust-Note Note-Exhibition, Jury Prize

Hada Yoshiko《Wow, cat!》2023, oil pastel, acrylic and watercolor pencil on paper, 30.5x42.7cm
Hada Yoshiko《Blue bird flies-2》2024, oil pastel and watercolor pencil on paper, 38x53cm
Hada Yoshiko《Everyday Happy》2024, oil pastel, watercolor pencil and oil on paper, , 25x32.5cm