Also known as:
Bumpei Akaji was born in Lawai, on the Hawaiian island of Kauai in 1921. In 1943 he joined the United States Army and was sent to Italy with the 100th Battalion of the 442nd Regimental Combat Team, receiving his discharge in Italy. Inspired by the artwork in Florence, he studied at the Academy of Fine Arts in Florence and at the Academia de Belle Arti, Brera, in Milan on a Fulbright Scholarship. In 1950, he returned to Honolulu and in 1951 received a Master of Fine Arts in painting from the University of Hawaii at Manoa. Along with Satoru Abe, Edmund Chung, Tetsuo Ochikubo, Jerry T. Okimoto, James Park, and Tadashi Sato, Bumpei Akaji was a member of the Metcalf Chateau, a group of seven Asian-American artists with ties to Honolulu.
Akaji learned welding from a local mechanic and is best known for his large-scale welded copper and brass sculptures, which are both organic and abstract in nature. The welded and/or pounded surfaces of his sculptures are often warm and sensual and over time develop a unique patina. He died in 2002. The The Contemporary Museum, Honolulu and the Hawaii State Art Museum are among the public collections holding work by Bumpei Akaji.