Kato Yasukage

SOFA: WEST (Santa Fe)

August 4 – 7, 2011

Kato Yasukage (b. 1964)
Oribe-glazed sculpted flower vessel
2011
Glazed stoneware
20 x 16 x 8 1/4 inches

Press Release

Specializing in the centuries-old traditions of milky-white shino and rich green copper oribe glazes, KATO YASUKAGE XIV (b. 1964) is one of the top young ceramic talents working in Japan today. Following two extremely successful exhibitions in New York, Joan B. Mirviss LTD is pleased to present Kato’s most recent oeuvre at SOFA WEST: Santa Fe. With a perfect balance between his sculptural sensibilities and classical technique, Kato has received much acclaim both in Japan and in the US. His work can be found in a number of museum collections, most notably at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Museum of Fine Art, Boston; and Philadelphia Museum of Art.

Whether considering Kato’s bold sculptural forms or his more intimate functional pieces, his pure and luscious glazes perfectly complement and enhance his strong vessels with their varied surfaces. One of the few artists in Mino (Gifu Prefecture) still using a traditional wood-fired kiln, he is the fourteenth-generation ceramist in his family. From a region renowned for shino and oribe, due to the untimely deaths of his father and grandfather, Kato was sent at age eighteen to study Bizen-style wood firing with Living National Treasure Yamamoto Toshu. Further academic training in sculpture at Nagoya University before returning to Gifu gave him a fresh perspective with which to approach the traditional techniques of his ancestors. Kato’s personal visual vocabulary perfectly blends his sense of the classical with his strikingly modern forms, bringing this celebrated tradition of shino-oribe into the 21st century.