Biography

Hamada Shoji attained unsurpassed recognition at home and abroad for his folk art style ceramics. Inspired by Okinawan and Korean ceramics in particular, Hamada became an important figure in the Japanese folk arts movement in the 1960’s.  He was a founding member of the Japan Folk Art Association with Bernard Leach, Kawai Kanjiro, and Yanagi Soetsu.

After 1923, he moved to Mashiko where he rebuilt farmhouses and established his large workshop. Throughout his life, Hamada demonstrated an excellent glazing technique, using trademark glazes such as tenmoku iron glaze, nuka rice-husk ash glaze, and kaki persimmon glaze.  Through his frequent visits and demonstrations abroad, Hamada influenced many European and American potters in later generations as well as those of his own.