Browse Items (70 total)

  • Collection: Forging Alliances

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Shoji Hamada began his career as a painter, but turned to ceramics at the age of 19 after meeting the potters Bernard Leach and Kenkishi Tomimoto in 1912. In 1918, he traveled to Okinawa to study traditional kiln construction. In 1920, Leach invited…

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This sturdy sake vessel, made from the rich, brown clay native to the Naeshirogawa area, combines function with aesthetic and cultural values. The deep, black glaze was likely applied by turning the container upside down and dipping it directly into…

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Influenced by his mentor, Shoji Hamada, whose work is displayed to the right, Shimaoka developed a unique style of pottery called jomon zogan, fusing two traditional styles of decoration: the jomon rope technique and a Korean Yi Dynasty process of…

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In addition to Shimaoka’s use of rope inlays, he also employed a technique known as hakeme, in which slip is applied directly to the surface of a pot with a stiff brush, clearly visible on his paddled vase. Shimaoka’s decorations often incorporate a…

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A potter and professor of art education, Kenneth Beittel catalyzed Penn State’s engagement with post-war Japanese ceramics. With the help of Penn State agronomy professor Henry Fortmann, who had recently returned from Japan, Beittel arranged to use a…

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Michiaki Kaneshige was the son of Toyo Kaneshige (1896-1967), who is credited with the revival of traditional Bizen ceramic techniques. Named for the province formerly known as Bizen, this ware garners its red-orange hues from the high iron content…

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Maruta studied with Shōji Hamada, who singled him out as “an artist to represent [Japanese] folk art to the West.” This vase was thrown on a potter’s wheel, fired at a high temperature, topped with a salt glaze and then fired again. The broad…

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A visit to the village Mashiko, a center for traditional ceramics, inspired Takauchi to leave a career in business to become a potter. He established his own kiln in 1968. Unlike earlier potters in the mingei (folk art) tradition, who adhered to…

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The town of Shigaraki, known for its clay, is situated in the southern part of Shiga Prefecture and has one of the six oldest kilns in Japan. The name Shigaraki derives from shigeru ki, meaning “well-wooded,” which refers to the densely-wooded…

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This vase is in the kuro (black) oribe style, characterized by the use of shiny black glaze to emphasize the shape of the piece. Oribe style is traditional Mino ware, named after the Mino district in Gifu prefecture. The Oribe style is traced back to…
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