Life is not the amount of breaths you take, it’s the moment that takes your breath away.
— Vicki Corona


As a student, I have helped to organize a number of exhibitions not only in Prague, but also in Geneva, featuring works of Pascal Krieger, and in Tokyo, displaying the masterpieces of Saito Isoji. These exhibitions I have organized to a large extent by myself, with a kind help and support of my students and friends.

2014 January “Slova v tusi ukryta” (“Words hidden in ink”) Japanese embassy in Prague 

2015 January “Bily snih – cerna stopa” (“White snow – black trace”) National Library of Technology 

René Ochiai 

I am 38 years old and getting older every day. Before I started to be interested in calligraphy, I was practicing a martial art Aikido. I discovered calligraphy in 1997 in Japanese elementary school, the Japanese language, and other Japanese arts followed. At that school, I got in touch with Japanese for the first time and fell in love with everything from Japan right away. Afterward, I studied calligraphy under Pascal Krieger and Saito Isoji. In March 2015 I moved to Tokyo, where I continued with calligraphy and teach Japanese professionally. In July 2018 I moved with my family to Prague where I opened a studio of calligraphy.

My personality is quite complicated. I can feel incredibly happy as well as extremely down. I am definitely a dreamer and an introvert, perhaps a loner. But do not get me wrong, I love to be around nice people. I just do not mind to spend some time alone when they are not close. I am very happy that I discovered calligraphy quite early in my life. It suits me perfectly. I am also pretty lucky that I was not born Asian because I would probably not appreciate the calligraphy in the same way as being a European.

My view of the world is quite confused. People keep shocking me all the time. I do not know much about politics. But I respect people like Merkel, Trudeau, Obama or Macron these days.

I am seriously addicted to chocolate and coffee. I love to eat extremely unhealthy food and to watch movies or listening Seal's music. I like the window shopping at small shops with handmade stuff. I am happier on a bicycle than in Tokyo subway.   

People keep telling me that I am a good teacher. It is funny because I was not a particularly good and successful student. The very first day when I sat down behind a desk in one elementary school in the communist Czechoslovakia, I knew right away that there is something wrong. After many years of struggling, I ended up as a dropout from a graphic design college. If I would be 15 years old again and have a possibility to decide my future life course again, I would probably become a glassblower.

A few years ago, I was brave enough to propose to the most beautiful girl I have ever met and she was foolish enough that day to say “hai.” Because of her work, we move every few years. Currently we live in Prague where I recently opened a studio of calligraphy.