Shari Arai DeBoer


photo: Cris Matos

Shari is a visual artist working in various media. She has a degree in architecture and practiced in the profession before turning her focus to art. Shari grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area where her family had a nursery business.

Her artwork has been featured in the magazine, Edible East Bay, in the anthology, Cheers to Muses: Contemporary Works by Asian American Women, and in Science Tarot, a deck of tarot cards that illustrates stories of scientific discovery to reinterpret the tarot. She was Artist-in-Residence in the Artist Studio Program at the de Young museum in San Francisco, and has exhibited her work throughout California. Shari serves on the board of Asian American Women Artists Association and is active in several arts communities. She gives private instruction in watercolor.

Artist Statement

I am a close observer of plant life and everyday objects and use them to evoke visual stories in my artwork. While much of my artwork reflects the influence of Asian art, my subject matter is rooted in my experience of growing up in northern California and my Japanese American heritage.

I study sumi-e, traditional Japanese brush painting as a weekly exercise. The immediacy of the art form provides a contrast to the printmaking process, and the focus, control, and freedom of sumi-e inform my other artwork. Over the years I have become more playful in my use of imagery and have developed a vocabulary of symbols that speak of time, values, hidden stories, and our sense of strength and fragility. But whatever the media or subject matter, my work seems to convey a sense of quietness and reflection.


Shari Arai DeBoer
shari_deboer (at)

PO Box 21355
El Sobrante, CA 94820
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