Friday, 21 December 2007
I've been in Bris Vegas for three years now. But I'm still confused about seasons, particularly the end of the year is tricky for me because I'm from Japan - even though I know I'm in the Southern Hemisphere and I know it's summer here - it just doesn't feel like December! Recently, I went to some suburb to see the Christmas lights. This was my second time actually. And I realised that Christmas lights are really good to adjust my seasons gap. Because it's visually very Christmassy and it's dark. So I kind of got a sense that 2008 is just around the corner!
Thursday, 20 December 2007
This new work is made from flour, eggs and sugar - it's called typhoon. I usually always do hand mixing when I make cakes, but this time I used a machine and I couldn't stop mixing! Machines create many interesting and complicated forms within just a second. I was so excited about it that I ended up over mixing the cream - even though I knew what would happen if I did. Next time I think I should use my hands more!
Thursday, 13 December 2007
Sunday, 18 November 2007
Long time no write! At this time of year, there is always a lot happening so time just goes so quickly. I always want to show things that I have been given from people and that I love. These paintings are the main character of my house and make the house lovely. Actually these paintings are from my brother-in-law, Dan Brock. He does a lot of different lovely drawings and paintings, and he recently started a blog called Dan Brock Paintings Please check it out!!
Monday, 8 October 2007
I grew up in Nara Japan where there was no ocean but heaps of mountains and rice fields close to my house. Now when I go back to Japan, things come back to me about my childhood - I spent so much time in the rice fields and in my grandmother's vege farm. And when I see old Japanese post boxes (like the one below), I think about how many times I have changed the direction of the post box. They are made from concrete and sit on a stone base without an anchor, so it is easy to change its direction. Back when I was a kid changing the direction of the post box, I never realised that these kinds of things would become important memories down the track that make me feel relaxed and happy. I was just cheeky!
Thursday, 23 August 2007
I'm involved in group exhibition called Make Art Not War! The Gallery is called onetwentyeight in New York. It's on until 1 September so If anyone is around please check it out!! My friend Tomoko is also in that show. Her work is so lovely!! Thanks for looking after my work Tomoko!!
Monday, 6 August 2007
Long time no write! Actually I went to Japan for three weeks recently to see my family and friends. I had a great time! I enjoyed the food and "Onsens" (hot springs) and seeing nature and meeting with friends and family. It was "tsuyu"(rainy season) which literally means plum rain - sounds lovely doesn't it? While I was there, we had two typhoons but it wasn't too bad around Nara (next to Kyoto). So there were a lot of rainy days - which was kind of enjoyable and a bit unusual because I haven't seen the rain for a long time in Brisbane. But probably the local Japanese people were a bit sick of rain. Actually my friend said "can you take it to Brisbane?" It's a good idea but impossible. Anyway I would love to show you some of the photos from my trip. Stay tune!!
Friday, 6 July 2007
Group exhibition is coming! It's called Ceramics & Glass 2007 at Marks & Gardner Gallery North Tamborine running from 8 July until 5 August. Mel and Pru, Amanda Joe-Asare, Mollie Bosworth, Michaela Kloeckner, Cathy Keys, Chris Pantano, Jonathon Westacott, Joanna Bone and I are involved so if you're around - please check it out!
Tuesday, 19 June 2007
Recently I had a lovely day on the weekend. My friends and I did a ceramics session at my friend's place. I was the only one who does ceramics as a full time job - my friends are beginners and haven't had much wheel throwing experience. My friend has an electric wheel but it goes in the opposite direction to mine (which is the common Aussie way) and it doesn't have a switch to let you change the direction (my wheel in Aus doesn't have one either). In Japan most people throw clockwise (only a few traditional places are doing it the other way). So I'm a clockwise user! Since I came to Australia I had an interesting time because of the wheel direction. I couldn't make decent work because I couldn't find a clockwise turning wheel so I had a little bit of a struggle. I love throwing but I just couldn't do it! But because of this circumstance, I concentrated on hand building - especially slab building. Even now, while I've got a wheel that turns the right way for me, I'm still making hand built stuff most of time. Anyway, I took my electric wheel along to my friend's place so there were two electric wheels working and my friends were wrestling with the clay. Mud spitting everywhere! Just as they were getting the hang of it, I had to say "STOP!!", because we had a plan to go to GoMA to listen to Mel's talk about Gwyn Hanssen Pigott's work at GoMA. I thought it would be good for my friends to listen to a ceramic artist's talk. The talk went really well and we really enjoyed it! Mel is such a good speaker and I could see that she was enjoying herself. That is why I called this weekend LOVELY!! Apparently my friends have sore muscles though. haha!
Monday, 11 June 2007
Recently some lovely stuff came out of my kiln! I've been playing with round forms and right angle forms lately. It's just a normal, simple approach. But sometimes, I find that taking a simple approach can be the best way to develop new ideas, without the pressure of trying to do something complicated and new. I've just started to explore some lovely new forms, but I'm not rushing. I'm happy to just enjoy small discoveries and little moments of happiness as they happen!
Sunday, 3 June 2007
Sometimes I need to do some lovely activities apart from having fun with clay. I do drawing, eating yummy food, reading, drinking, making furniture and I also play music. Music is one of my important activities. I play drums and have a great time with lots of different people without any language barriers. Recently I've been practising with a friend of mine Mardi and her friends for her EP launch and we've been having a great time!! I had been to see her play a few times and every time, I got goosebumps! Her EP launch is happening on 10 June so if you're around in Brisbane, please check it out!! It's going to be a lovely show!!
Saturday, 26 May 2007
Sunday, 20 May 2007
About two and half years ago I came to Australia. As soon as I arrived, I had to prepare for a show called "Here and There" at Fusions Gallery. That was my first exhibition overseas. I showed my installation work called "Flow" which I made in Japan. The pieces were all hand built. It was a really lovely process to make the same thing over and over again by hand without thinking. Grab some clay, dumpling dumpling, and then pinch pinch!! That's it!! Ha ha!! I'm not saying that process was easy and quick, but you know when you've done something hard like trekking, you remember most of the good things. Even if you had thought "oh no what am I doing?" or "I'm not going to do this again!!" at the time.
Monday, 7 May 2007
My new home studio is getting more studio like. Recently my lovely small kiln was finally connected and I did a few test firings. And the result wasn't bad at all! It's a slow but really exciting process to set up my own studio. I feel quite relieved now. My studio is getting used to being with me, and I'm getting used to being in my studio. There needs to be a good relationship I think! Little people look so interesting when they are laying down or standing next to each other. I feel like having a chat with them, but unfortunately they are very quiet. So I always turn the radio on (ABC radio national). It's great! I feel like I'm studying English wile I'm doing ceramics. But I'm still not 100% sure what are they talking about all the time (ha ha!). But I think I'm getting better and better.
Tuesday, 24 April 2007
Just a note to let you know about an exhibition I'm in at All Hand Made Gallery (a beautiful tiny space in Bronte) called The Jug Show from April 24 – May 22, 2007. The artists involved are Louise Boscacci, Gaye Collett, Liz Hardy, Patsy Hely, Keiko Matsui, Milton Moon, David Ray, Mel Robson, Steve Sheridan, Penny Smith, Toni Warburton, Kenji Uranishi (me!), Prue Venebles and Gerry Wedd. If you are around please check it out!!
Saturday, 21 April 2007
Recently I saw our little people at the coffee shop in the middle of the day! It's so funny - as soon as Mel put them down, the coffee shop became a huge landscape. It was surprising! Our little people in an everyday setting, suddenly made something really normal become really unusual! It's a human wonderland! Sandwiches became huge mountains. Instead of eating them, I think they wanted to climb them! Thanks for letting us play at the coffee shop Jacqui!
Recently I made some new pieces of furniture to keep everything tidy. It took a long time to make, but it was so much fun! I don't use expensive materials, because I'm not good enough yet! I always use off-cut mdf or chip board, which is not so water resistant, but is cheaper. Some day I want to use really good looking timber. So I'll keep making and learning and having fun. And I'm sure those experiences will be very useful for ceramics. Ohhhh...I want to get another tool!
Wednesday, 11 April 2007
As I've said before, I love doing hand building. But I've also always wanted to try slip casting. So recently I made these figures to see how the slip casting would go - and they came out quite well! Mel and I decided to experiment with them....and she made them look cool!! (see below) It's amazing how different each one is. You can imagine they each have some kind of interesting story - and there is a loveliness about them. Actually, I like watching people's reaction when they look at my work. I can see the difference and similarity between them through their reactions, and a little bit of their stories. It's really interesting! I'm going to keep updating the Little People's Little Project....so stay tuned!
Sunday, 1 April 2007
Recently, my friend Yuri from Japan visited. We met when we were studying at Nara College of Fine Art. She had a great time in Australia, even though we caught a cold. That was her first time Aussie adventure. We went to the Queensland Art Gallery and Gallery of Modern Art and we found a lovely activity (part of kids'APT) and we tried it! These images are our results of that activity. It was easy and quick but very enjoyable! You just had to trace onto the paper some of the drawings on the table - the table was lit from underneath so you could trace easily. What beautiful artwork! There are lots of kids activities, and some you can do even if you are an adult. So please check it out!!
Tuesday, 13 March 2007
Since I came to Australia I've been using porcelain and mainly I do hand building with slabs. It's such a lovely process but it's also a bit tricky and takes a long time to make. Often I draw on the pieces with colour - sometimes just fine lines and sometimes landscapes. Recently I started to do slip casting. It is so interesting to try new things. Hopefully I can show you something later.
Saturday, 10 March 2007
I went to an island not far from my house called Straddie. I had a great time! It's interesting to see the tide come and go. When I'm in the city, I never think about the tides, but staying by the bay, I watched the tides every day. If you only spend a little bit of time at the ocean, you don't notice the movements but if you spend a longer time there, it's really active. It was a great holiday and made me feel inspired to start making again. Enjoying nature is fun! Thank you Straddie and see you soon!!
Thursday, 1 March 2007
February has gone already - that was so fast and it's not just because it was the shortest month of the year. In October 2004 I came to Australia and I started working at Fusions as artist in residence - that's where I met Mel Robson. Since then we have shared several studios including Southbank TAFE, Gateway TAFE and Sculptors Queensland. I have been supported by many great people along the way - especially Stephanie from Fusions, teachers from TAFE and Mark from Sculptors QLD. I am so grateful for their support. But most of these opportunities could not have happened if it wasn't for Mel. She is a top Aussie lady! But unfortunately it's time to now work from home, because there is no residency program to move on to. I was so lucky to have great studios and a great share mate. It was sad to leave. That is why I felt February 2007 was so fast. But I feel like something is coming in the near future. Also Mel and I have an exciting plan - We will do a collaborative project some time soon. More info coming up soon! ARIGATO!!!
Saturday, 24 February 2007
Recently I found a beautiful piece of bark from a park nearby but I don't know the name of the tree. It looks a bit like a cherry tree. Twice a year Japanese people do koromogae (wardrobe rotation) in Autumn and Spring. Since I came to Brisbane I haven't done any koromogae because of the weather - which is very handy! But I think I should do some koromogae because it's kind of nice to feel the seasons through koromogae activity.