Mieko Mahi, Industrial Artist

Photograph by Mieko Mahi.

Art in the Oil Patch, the photography of Mieko Mahi. Most people don’t associate art with the oil and gas industry.  But once you’ve seen the dramatic work of Mieko Mahi, one of the world’s leading petroleum photographers, you might think otherwise.  Commissioned by energy magazines and leading oil and gas firms, Mieko travels the world to photograph onshore and offshore drilling rigs, barges, pipelines, and oil refineries. Over the years, Mieko’s work has become increasingly artistic.  She enjoys drawing on her art education, to capture the hidden beauty of the oil and gas industry.  She juxtaposes the marvels of engineering against the natural world, often finding angles, lighting, and color to achieve an alluring image. “I don’t take pictures,” she likes to say.  “I create them.  The energy business is so global, I think bringing a touch of art to it is long overdue.”  Her latest project involves black-and-white portraiture of the petroleum industry’s top 100 leaders and icons. Based near Houston, living on a ranch in Hallettsville. Mieko’s award-winning photographs have been published hundreds of times on the covers and inside of industry trade publications. Her work also appears in annual reports and corporate brochures.  Some of her most striking images hang in maritime museum exhibits and the offices of energy companies in the U.S., Middle East, and Europe.  “Mieko’s petroleum images portray the beauty of industrial imaging and appeals to all of our visitors,” says Phil Barnes, Curator, Texas Maritime Museum in Rockport, Texas.