Ogawa Machiko

Fire and Ice

September 16 – October 23, 2009

Opening Reception
Wednesday, September 16th
6:00 - 8:00 pm

White vessel with cracked blue glass glaze
Porcelainous stoneware with glass glaze
11 3/8 x 23 5/8 x 24 3/4 inches
Inv# 6163

White vessel with cracked blue glass glaze
Porcelainous stoneware with glass glaze
11 3/8 x 23 5/8 x 24 3/4 inches
Inv# 6163

White vessel with cracked blue glass glaze
Porcelainous stoneware with glass glaze
11 3/8 x 23 5/8 x 24 3/4 inches
Inv# 6163

White vessel with blue glass glaze and rim following natural breaks
Porcelainous stoneware with glass glaze
13 3/8 x 22 1/2 x 12 1/4 inches
Inv# 6161

White vessel with blue glass glaze and rim following natural breaks
Porcelainous stoneware with glass glaze
13 3/8 x 22 1/2 x 12 1/4 inches
Inv# 6161

Large vessel with metallic glaze
11 7/8 x 16 1/2 x 19 3/4 inches
Stoneware with applied silver glaze
Inv#6179

Red Vessel with bending curled lip
Stoneware with iron oxide glaze
14 1/4 x 15 x 9 inches
Inv# 6204

Red Vessel with bending curled lip
Stoneware with iron oxide glaze
14 1/4 x 15 x 9 inches
Inv# 6204

Vessel with metallic glaze
8 3/4 x 14 5/8 x 16 5/8 inches
Stoneware with applied silver glaze
Inv#6181

White stoneware vessel with round torn mouth and blue glass glaze
Porcelainous stoneware with glass glaze
6 1/2 x 15 1/8 x 15 3/8 inches
Inv# 6169

Boat shaped vessel with metallic glazes
Stoneware with silver glazes
3 1/2 x 5 1/2 x 22 1/2 inches
Inv# 6183

Silver glazed flower vessel with notched opening
Stoneware with silver glaze
5 1/8 x6 3/4 x 7 5/8 inches
Inv# 6174

Small bowl with metallic glaze
Stoneware with silver and white-gold glazes
3 5/8 x 5 3/4 x 5 1/2 inches
Inv# 6188

Special dinner honoring Ogawa Machiko
held by Halsey and Alice North
(click for further images)

Special dinner honoring Ogawa Machiko
held by Halsey and Alice North
(click for further images)

Special dinner honoring Ogawa Machiko
held by Halsey and Alice North
(click for further images)

Special dinner honoring Ogawa Machiko
held by Halsey and Alice North
(click for further images)

Special dinner honoring Ogawa Machiko
held by Halsey and Alice North
(click for further images)

Special dinner honoring Ogawa Machiko
held by Halsey and Alice North
(click for further images)

Opening reception at Joan B Mirviss LTD
September 16, 2009
(click for further images)

Opening reception at Joan B Mirviss LTD
September 16, 2009
(click for further images)

Opening reception at Joan B Mirviss LTD
September 16, 2009
(click for further images)

Opening reception at Joan B Mirviss LTD
September 16, 2009
(click for further images)

Opening reception at Joan B Mirviss LTD
September 16, 2009
(click for further images)

Press Release

Joan B. Mirviss Ltd is honored to present the first American solo show of celebrated Japanese ceramic artist OGAWA MACHIKO. Titled Fire and Ice: The Dynamic Clay Art of Ogawa Machiko, the show will feature nearly 30 works created specifically for this exhibition.

Additionally, in support this exhibition, Joan B Mirviss LTD will hold two conversations with Ogawa Machiko in the gallery.
• Friday, September 18th at 2:00pm
• Wednesday, September 23rd at 2:30pm

Seating is very limited, so be sure to reserve your place by emailing Sarah Kershaw or phoning the gallery at 212-799-4021.

Since her arrival on the ceramic scene in 1985, Ogawa Machiko (b. 1946) has been a vital influence on the dialogue of contemporary clay. Influenced by her teachers - both Living National Treasures - while at Tokyo National University of Fine Arts & Music, Ogawa also drew inspiration from her travels which included living and studying in Paris at the École d'Arts et Métiers and accompanying her anthropologist husband to Burkina Faso in West Africa for nearly a decade. At each juncture Ogawa absorbed her surrounding environment and channeled her experiences directly into her work. The resulting spherical vessels with torn mouths reference Ogawa's perennial interest in creation, destruction and the effects of time. Other vivid orange-red work, due to the added iron oxide, reflect the aesthetics of neolithic Jomon and ancient Yayoi ceramics. Charcoal gray and platinum-glazed vessels are often patterned with carved, softly geometric designs either on the interior or exterior.

"It is my passion for the earth that drives my continual search for the essential in art. The vessel form, with both interior and exterior space, enables me to best pursue this quest––it is not about making vases. Rather, I am inspired by the concept of emptiness within the whole. It is in the dialogue between form and void that I find artistic freedom."

To many, her works appear spontaneous, as if pulled from the earth. In fact, Ogawa relies upon the technical abilities she developed by trial and error while searching for the perfect tension between glaze and form. One approach involves changing the temperature of the kiln mid-firing to control the rate of shrinkage of the clay in relation to the contraction of the glaze. This tightly controlled method produces the brilliant crackling of the clear and aqua glass glazes, so integral to her work, that contrast with the white sand-colored textured forms that enfold it.

While her travels have inspired her aesthetic, Ogawa remains bound to her Japanese heritage. Her pieces, which bridge Eastern and Western sensibilities, have earned her international acclaim and led to her being only the fourth woman ever to be awarded the prestigious Japan Ceramics Society Prize in 2001. Last year, Ogawa was honored with the highly sought-after Art Encouragement Prize from the Japanese Ministry of Education and Culture.

Roughly-hewn, powerful yet elegant, Ogawa Machiko's work engages the viewer by encouraging consideration of the element of emptiness within her vessels and to intellectually fill these voids. This dialogue between viewer and object links the work to the ancient tradition of Japanese ceramics, the African landscape and the earth.