Home Culture Artist Interviews: May Fukuyama Levine {+ Her Hoboken Gallery}

Artist Interviews: May Fukuyama Levine {+ Her Hoboken Gallery}

by Stephanie Vermillion
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This month, local artist May Fukuyama Levine is taking over the Mason Civic League gallery {1200 Washington Street in Hoboken} with a variety of colorful fluid and abstract paintings. The uptown Hoboken resident, who moved to the Mile Square in January 2018, has only been painting full time since last year — but she’s been an artist all her life. Check out our exclusive interview with May, and learn more about her art.

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“I’ve always been artistic in general; I like to think it’s in my blood because my grandpa’s an artist and my mom’s a creative potter,” May shared with Hoboken Girl. “This all started as a stress-relieving outlet for me last year and it turned into something much bigger.”

She has two distinct painting styles of fluid and abstract. Virtually all artwork is conceptualized and created in her Shipyard apartment. Levine’s inspiration, though, comes from all over the world and beyond. 

“I get my inspiration everywhere, but mostly from nature, the ocean, sunsets, galaxies, and anything that’s bigger than myself,” she said. “I love going through NASA’s Instagram, too. It’s so beautiful.”


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READ: Local Hoboken Artists’ Scenes to Hang in Your Home 

Levine’s business name, Chobimade, stands for “Made by Chobimay;” this was her nickname as a child {“chobi” means “little” in Japanese}. She was born in Houston and spent half her life in Japan before meeting her husband, Jay, and moving to the NYC area, and ultimately Uptown Hoboken. Levine sees this gallery as an opportunity to become immersed in the Hoboken community through her favorite subject: art.

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“I never imagined myself having this beautiful gallery space to myself for a whole month after just starting full-time last year,” she said. “We’re still new to the area, so to connect with people who come into the gallery is truly a blessing.”

Levine’s style of painting is popular across social media. Her pieces, a fusion of soft and cosmic colors blended by chance, are designed to bring a sense of calm and peacefulness to the owner.


“I love blue so I gravitate toward it, but I try to work with other colors like neutrals that are more sophisticated or pastels, or even gentle hues for a nursery,” she said. “I want my artwork to make people feel peaceful so they can get away from the chaos of reality to come home and have that Zen space.”

This month’s Happy Accidents dog-friendly gallery {yes, you read that right — dog-friendly!} is open through November 30. The artwork is on sale in the gallery {located at 1200 Washington Street, Suite 1}, or available on www.chobimade.com.


Thank you for chatting with us, May!

Are you a local artist that wants to be featured? Email us your story and photos of your work at hello@hobokengirl.com.

See More: DISTORT, Artist Behind New Hoboken Project, Talks Inspiration Behind Mural

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