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Nicole Hall
Senior Communications Specialist

T: 619.400.2859
M: 858.531.2863

After hours and weekends please email or call the Airport Communications Center at 619.400.2710

Arts Program at San Diego International Airport Announces Local Artist Kaori Fukuyama Has Been Selected for Under the Wing Mentorship Program

Thursday, July 15, 2021

The Arts Program at San Diego International Airport (SAN) is pleased to announce Kaori Fukuyama, a San Diego-based multi-disciplinary artist has been selected to participate in the new Under the Wing Mentorship Program. Ms. Fukuyama will support selected mentor artist Nova Jiang who has been commissioned to create a permanent public artwork at SAN as part of the planned New T1 program.

The Under the Wing mentorship program is a professional development opportunity for emerging and mid-career artists to gain knowledge of the public art process from concept through installation. Noted as the first of its kind in an airport arts program, the Under the Wing mentorship program will conclude when the large-scale public art project is commissioned for the planned New T1 ticketing lobby. Ms. Fukuyama will assist Ms. Jiang by providing support services to advance the project’s development including research, participation in studio visits, liaison to internal and community stakeholders, coordination and planning of team meetings, and documentation of the artwork’s development. One of the program’s central goals is to support an aspiring public artist in launching a successful career in this challenging field.

“The Arts Program at San Diego International Airport is committed to bringing new voices into the field of public art through innovative programs like the Under the Wing Mentorship Program,” said Kimberly Becker, San Diego County Regional Airport Authority President and CEO. “I want to congratulate Ms. Fukuyama on being selected for this professional development opportunity.”

Originally from Kumamoto, Japan, Ms. Fukuyama currently lives and works in San Diego. Her practice spans paintings, drawings, sculptures, and site-specific installations that explore the interactions of color, light and shadow. She works with a variety of materials including paint, ink, paper, textile, monofilament, acrylic, and resin in pursuit of a deeper understanding of our visual perception. Ms. Fukuyama was an Artist-In-Residence at Bread & Salt, San Diego in 2018, recently completed a large-scale public art installation in North Park San Diego and is a recipient of San Diego Art Prize 2020.

“Ms. Fukuyama was selected to participate based on her commitment to making the transition to public art as well as her desire to help mentor other artists if selected for the opportunity,” said Arts Program Senior Manager Chris Chalupsky.

"I am very excited for this unique opportunity to work with the mentor artist, Nova Jiang, and San Diego International Airport Arts Program staff through the Mentorship Program,” said Ms. Fukuyama. “I hope to learn how to execute a successful public art project, and in turn, contribute to the local art community by sharing my insights from this experience."  

The SAN Arts Program received 34 submissions to the Under the Wing Mentorship pilot program. All submissions were reviewed by an artist selection panel composed of the commissioned artist Nova Jiang, Arts Program staff, and a liaison from the Airport Arts Advisory Committee. Interviews were conducted with finalists prior to selection.

For more information about Under the Wing Mentorship Program, as well as other SAN Arts Program initiatives public works of art, please visit


San Diego International Airport (SAN) is the busiest single-runway commercial service airport in the U.S. and the third busiest airport in California. In 2019, SAN welcomed 25-million passengers and offered nonstop flights to destinations worldwide. The airport is an economic driver for the region, contributing nearly $12 billion in economic activity in 2019 and supports nearly 116,600 jobs. With anticipated passenger growth in the future, the Airport Authority is continuing progress with the New T1 program that will replace Terminal 1 with a larger, more efficient facility and other improvements that enhance the airport experience. The airport is managed and operated by the San Diego County Regional Airport Authority. For more information, please visit




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