Artist Interview with Catriona Robertson

Portrait of Catriona Robertson in front of a white tile wall.

Portrait of Catriona Robertson in front of a white tile wall.Location: currently living in London
Job: Instructor at Central St. Martin’s



Tell me about your medium and your work.
Mostly, recently, 3-D sculpture. I work a lot with lights. My paintings relate to current 3D sculpture. Right now I’m really into the bamboo. I go into the forest to collect bamboo. I had a mini-explosion when I got here gathering material then seeing what forms it would take.

What is your current project?
I saw people using bamboo everywhere for all sorts of things. I’m interested in using bamboo as a structure.

**We talked about Catriona’s current bamboo and cement sculptures and that she’s pushing the limits of how tall she can make it and different processes for creating finishes and colors. She is also doing a series of mixed media collages in green using cut bamboo for printmaking. I forgot to photograph it. 😦 **

Tell me about the metal and light sculpture:

The metal is from a local metal scrap yard dealer. It was really interesting to see what happens to the metal, seeing it all piled up. I’m really attracted to circles and shiny things.

Why did you choose Shiro Oni?
I was looking for a place far from London, a quiet place where I could focus. I wanted a challenge with language and a rural area.

So what do you think of it here?
I liked the festival.* People are really welcoming. I particularly liked the lights [on the yatai or floats for the festival]. The train is easy because the stops are announced in English but the bus is hard. It can be difficult to get materials.

Check out more of Catriona’s work at

catriona-robertson-6-webCatriona’s End of Residency Show is on July 7/25-26 at Shiro Oni Studio
370-1401 Gunma Fujioka Onishi 529 Japan

How to Get to Shiro Oni From Tokyo (train and bus)

  • Tokyo -> Honjo Station 本庄駅 on JR Takasaki Line (I like to take Shonan Shinjuku Liner because it goes straight to Honjo)
    • fare about 1660 depending on originating station
  • Use South Exit.
  • Take the bus which stops in front of the 7-11., bus leaves about once an hour
  • Get off at Onishi Yubinkyoku Mae (鬼石郵便局前)**. Bus fare is 660 yen.
  • Walk about five minutes to Shiro Oni Residency main building, Kinuya.

*The Shiro Oni artists in residence practiced and prepared with their Onishi neighbors pulling the yatai (festival float) and playing taiko for the Onishi Summer Matsuri

**If you use a train navigation app you can enter the kanji and it will give you the departure times for the bus from Honjo.


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