The earliest recordings of kanji were discovered on tortoise shells and cow bones, approximately 2000 – 1500 BC in the Yellow River region of China. Over time, these symbols became more complex and abstract, growing into over 50,000 characters. These eventually migrated throughout the Orient. In Japan it was named kanji.
Kanji is not only a written language, it is an art form. The history of how each character evolved into meaning fascinates me. I began painting kanji during a two year stay in Hokkaido Japan. While my early interpretations of kanji were quite legible, they are now more abstract, maintaining a hint of its original meaning.