Second solo exhibition of renowned ceramicist Mitsukuni Misaki at Ippodo New York after six years

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Second solo exhibition of renowned ceramicist Mitsukuni Misaki at Ippodo New York after six years
Mitsukuni Misaki Color-Glazed Mud Vessels- 彩釉泥器, 2023 Ceramic.

NEW YORK, NY.- Ippodo Gallery presents Floating Vessels: Stoneware by Mitsukuni Misaki, the master ceramicist’s return to New York after six years. Over 30 of Misaki’s latest works from small vases to majestic containers are featured from January 18 to February 15, 2024. Stretching out like a boundless horizon, Misaki’s modern and hand-coiled forms signal those timeless ceramics of ancient peoples.

Mitsukuni Misaki (b. 1951) ventures into the unknown with every new work, producing powerful yet enfolded objects that manifest the dual strength and subtlety of beauty. Born in Chiba in western Japan, he graduated Chuo University’s law department, yet a chance encounter with Fujio Koyama (1900-1975)—the scholarly authority on pottery and porcelain, and a potter himself—lodged a desire in Misaki’s heart to pursue ceramics. Traveling about the mainland, Misaki received training in four classical kiln techniques: kutani, uchiharano, aizu hongo, and bizen. This research guided Misaki to begin his own kiln in 1979, where he maintains his secluded and contemplative practice nearly half a century later.

The Japanese archipelago was once home to the Jomon (c. 14,000 to 300 BC), an indigenous culture known only by the vestiges of their pottery. Misaki excavates modeling and decorative inspiration from their wares; his shapes are both sculpted and functional, while the supple surface is rolled with a braided cord for texture and hand-painted with numerous layers of pigmented slip. The philosophy of Mark Rothko also has made a deep impact on Misaki, enticing him to evoke the abstract painter’s color palette of juxtaposing gradients and soft hues. Misaki’s resolute experimentation on thousands of discarded works has precipitated a deep indigo blue that signifies the ambiguous divide between sea and sky.

A stylistic pioneer, Misaki has been acclaimed for his saideibachi and saiyuudeiki ceramic artworks. Awards for his creative practice include the Japan Kōgei Association Encouragement Price, the Japan Ceramic Art Exhibition Grand Prix (Chichibunomiya Trophy), the Japan Ceramics Biennale Special Merit Prize, the Encouragement Prize at the Kobe Biennale, and the 5th Kikuchi Biennale Grand Prix.

For only the second time in the United States, unearth the mesmerizing designs and perennial narrative of Misaki’s signature grand vessels.

Ippodo Gallery fosters shared craft- and fine art-oriented experiences. The gallery showcases work by living Japanese artists in keeping with our mission to honor traditions and present a gratitude for nature. Established in 1996 by Keiko Aono, Ippodo Gallery has represented more than 200 artists and held thousands of exhibitions in both Tokyo and New York over three decades. Shoko Aono began Ippodo Gallery New York in 2008, where she continues to expose global audiences to the finest artworks made in Japan today.

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