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Nami: Shikaku Geijutsu / Waves of Optical Illusion: Ogata Kamio
September 10 - October 25, 2019


The unique and optically stunning marbleized ceramics of Ogata Kamio (b. 1949) have earned this Hokkaidō artist memberships in two craft societies in Japan and entry into numerous international exhibitions, despite his rural birthplace. Joan B Mirviss LTD is excited to present this master ceramist's first solo exhibition outside Japan, Nami: Shikaku Geijutsu / Waves of Optical Illusion: Ogata Kamio, from September 10 to October 25, 2019.

Ogata Kamio is a self-taught artist who specializes in the extremely arduous art of neriage, or marbeleized clay. His mesmerizing vessels are what Louise Nicholson of Apollo magazine, compares to "a Fortuny creation in clay." He carefully assembles hundreds of paper-thin layers of gradated colored clay, from which he throws a ceramic with striated-linear surface patterns. To heighten the resemblance to wavs, he then softly carves and pleats the surface, often on a diagonal, choosing a range of blue, gray, and white-toned clays for each paper-thin layer. The resulting vessels appear to have rivers flowing beneath and through their surfaces. Overhead lighting further enhances this optical and often vertiginous effect for the viewer.

Why choose to focus on waves? For Ogata the waves symbolize the instability of contemporary society. As he states:

I try to express the spirit of our era, the gap between our physical and emotional selves, and how our daily lives are without focus. For me, this gap produces feelings of uncertainty and dizziness.

Ogata Kamio, was born and raised in rural Hokkaidō without any formal ceramic training or connections. He was drawn to ancient Chinese neriage (marbleized) clay vessels to the Tang period and after teaching himself the necessary techniques, he went on to teach pottery at the Shinshinozu Institute for the Handicapped. The Japanese clay world took notice after he won the Judge's special prize at the Mashiko Ceramic Exhibition in 2000 twice and the East Japan Area Prize at the 45th Japan Traditional Arts and Crafts New Works Competition.

Since gaining recognition, Ogata has exhibited extensively throughout Japan, participating in major shows in Tokyo, and at the Ibaraki Ceramic Art Museum. He has exhibited in multiple group exhibitions in North America, most recently at the Gardiner Museum in Toronto Canada. Additionally, Ogata's optically hypnotic vessels now reside in the permanent collections of eight major American museums, including The Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Nami; Shikaku Geijutsu / Waves of Optical Illusion: Ogata Kamio opening September 10, 2019 at Joan B Mirviss LTD marks the artist's first USA solo exhibition. The exhibition will run through October 25, 2019 during regular gallery hours: Mon – Fri. 11 am – 6 pm.