Asian Art Newspaper

Vessel Explored / Vessel Transformed - Tomimoto Kekichi and his Enduring Legacy

Joan Mirviss has devoted more than four dcades to the promotion and support of mainly 20th-century Japanese clay wares in New York and this year's solo showcase is in collaboration with Japan-based Shibuya Kurodatoen Co for the artist and teacher Tomimoto Kenkichi (1886-1963). Innovator, educator, and artist, he founded the Kyoto City University ceramics department, instructing students and encouraging the continued evolution of patterning. Yet the highlighted round white vessel from 1937 is patternless, glazed porcelain. His legacy as a teacher is exemplified in this exhibition as well. Because of his unusual path to knowledge, peppered with a wide array of travel experiences rather than brute training, he spawned whole categories of ceramics. The work of Kenkichi helped establish a school of ceramics with 19 names noted as contemporaries, discplines, including third-generation referential artists for comparison.