Tsukasa SUZUKI’s Lifework: “heART” Painted by Small Artists


There is ART in your heart.

Believe in the power of ART

in Rwanda

Starting as an educational program to teach painting to poverty-stricken Rwandan children, the project aims to give “small artists” the power to improve their lives through art. Each work of art is available for sale which the proceeds benefit these young artists directly.

heart & ART 『heART』

Artist Tsukasa Suzuki spent five years from 2011 to 2015 teaching sewing to over 200 people in Rwanda, Africa.

After moving back to Japan in 2016, he would still make short trips to Rwanda and began to teach painting to children in Rwanda as well as creating his own paintings.

Today, he has taught painting to more than 50 children, and helped them to sell more than 200 paintings across Japan being the bridge between these two worlds.

One boy, the youngest of nine children, was not able to go to school and was forced to beg for a living on the street. Buying one of this boy’s paintings will provide enough money for him and his family to live for about a month.

Tsukasa Suzuki’s passion for this project is threefold

  1. Provide equal opportunities to people from any background.
  2. Establish a nontraditional value for art.
  3. Challenge the world’s standard of value.

This projects want to teach children that regardless of their environment they still have value and miracles can happen in this world.

These art of works drown by Rwandan children are filled with their spirits and hope for the future which Tsukasa Suzuki strives to help them understand.

These paintings are born out of hope and possess the energy needed to make miracles happen for all people.

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heART’s activities became Tsukasa Suzuki’s lifework when he met a boy named David in Rwanda, where he spent five years.

Left David/ Right Olivia

David had been suffering from a serious liver disease since he was two years old, and lived for his entier life with a dialysis tube running through his body.

Due to his illness, he was small in size and looked like a child under the age of 10. He was bullied at school, had no friends, and lived at his grandmother’s house because even his family refused to sleep with him as the tubes in his body smelled so bad.

He happened to participate in an art workshop, which was to be the beginning of heART, although there was no way for Tsukasa to know his situation at that time, something shone in his paintings and made Tsukasa buy them.

His painting skill grew quickly, and with each successive show, he created more original and wonderful works.

Above all, there was something inspiring about the proud smile on his face when his work was finished.

It was probably the first time in his life that his value was recognized, and he could take pride in the act of painting.

By selling his paintings and selling them at a higher value, he would be able to earn money to treat his illness, provide him the chance to become one of the best artists in the world in the future.

This was the moment that heart was born, and making David’s dream reality became heART primary goal.

Unfortunately, several months after, David left his world to be with the angels.

The last time Tsukasa saw him was before he left for the airport to return to Japan. He remembers the look of happiness David had on his face. He looked as if he wanted to say something, and his angelic smile is still unforgettable.

This project through the power of art, wants to help children like David realize their talents. Through the chance encounter with David, heART was born, and life was breath into its mission. The letters used in heART’s logo were drawn by David before he passed away.

Yes. Our hearts are still and forever together with David.