NEW YORK—Japanese artist Mitsukuni Misaki‘s first solo exhibition outside of Japan Earth from Sky: Stoneware Works by Mitsukuni Misaki at Ippodo Gallery (September 7 – September 29, 2017) showcases 20 if his evanescent saiyuudeiki vessels. From an undulating oceanic blue to a stormy grey, each asymmetrical vessel, like a billowy cloud, rhythmically floats along the observer’s horizon imbuing a sense of serenity.
The poetry of form is paired with the artist’s urge to create powerful, lifelike works, encapsulating the dual strength and subtlety of beauty in nature.
The vessels draw directly from cosmology with their tangible atmospheric layers only previously experienced by astronauts and the brick layers in the ‘Tower of Babylon.‘ And like the tower, they gracefully carry us away in a dreamlike state only to find ourselves returned and grounded on the earth’s surface.
Deliberate and powerful expression is evidenced in the blue and black horizons of the stoneware, separating earth from sky.
According to Ippodo Gallery, in pursuit of form and color, with his divisive aesthetic of blue versus grey, in what Misaki calls Rothko-ing, his work undoubtedly bears reference to Mark Rothko’s iconic abstract expressionist works, not only with the two-tone structure, but also with the richness and gradations of the blue.
The dichotomy of the colors is also crucial, evoking the sense of tension in the quest for bliss. The blue is rubbed and refired using four layers of slip, infusing the pale blue glaze with a middle layer of white for depth, then coated with earthen tones to give the color an appearance of age.
Watch of video of Misaki’s process:
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