navbar topEmail UsSite MapPhoto Tours

eStore English Homepage

Japan Ceramic Art Awards
16th Biennial Exhibition



spacerReturn to Who's Who A to Z Menu

Click here for
18th Biennial
JCA Exhibit 2005
67 Photos

Click here for
17th Biennial
Exhibit 2003
36 Photos

Go to Photo Tours Main Menu
Click here for
more Awards

Yellin's gallery
sells pieces from
the kilns of Japan's
finest potters


Japan Ceramic Art Exhibition - Nihon Tougei Ten

In Tokyo until June 5, 2001
Daimaru Museum
Marunouchi 1-9-1
Phone: 03-3212-8011

In Osaka June 7 to 12, 2001
Shinsaibashi Daimaru
Shinsaibashi 1-7-1
Phone: 06-6252-9263

Inoue Taishu's large Shodai platter
The 16th biennial Japan Ceramic Art Exhibition (Nihon Tougei Ten) is now showing in Tokyo at Daimaru Museum (2001). It's a must see for anyone interested in the current ceramic scene.

Started in 1971 to commemorate the centennial of the founding of the Mainichi Newspaper, it attracts many of the finest established ceramic artists in the land as well as the up-and-coming.

The juried exhibition is unique in the fact that's it's divided into three distinct sections; dento or traditional,zenei or avant-garde and jitsuyou touki or practical pottery.

A total of 933 works were submitted and only 157 were chosen - in addition there are 58 invited potters including twelve
Living National Treasures for a total of 220 works on display.

This year's grand prize and the recipient of the Katsura no Miya Prize went to Seto ceramist Toda Morinobu.

Seto ceramist Toda Morinobu

The above zenei work is entitled 'This End Up 0103.' Actually it's a mixed-media work that utilizes a wooden box, metal fittings, and has many ceramic lumps, sticks and shell forms inside. Each interior ceramic piece has the artist's name stamped on it and they sort of reminded me of fishing lures. It's an atarashi kaze or new breeze for this exhibition to have such a zenei piece selected for top honors.

Inoue Taishu's large Shodai platter (1st photo on this page) was given the Mainichi Newspaper Award. Quite a large piece at 53 centimeters in diameter, it has dramatic white glaze splashes a la Hamada showered over a yellow-greenish glaze; very mingei.

Another top award went to Toyoyama Akihiro for his boxed work with wavy sides that make the piece appear as if it's collapsing onto itself. It is titled Suna no mon or Sand's Gate (see below).

Piece by Toyoyama Akihiro

Works that appealed to me were a very powerful large kame by Aizu-hongo potter Munakata Ryoichi, a striped henko by Hashimoto Masahiko, and an elegant 'draped' porcelain jar by Kubota Yasuyoshi -- the latter was also given the Mainichi Newspaper Prize.

Large kame by Aizu-hongo potter Munakata Ryoichi

Striped henko by Hashimoto Masahiko

Draped porcelain jar by Kubota Yasuyoshi

There were others, and also ones that I walked by with only a slight glance. The big names were mostly predictable (below) and disappointing, like Matsui Kosei's jar (below) and Imai Masayuki's chicken pot -- pardon my irreverence, but Imai needs to give it a break -- uninspired and dull.

Pieces by Living National Treasures

Piece by Matsui Kosei

The judges were also a who's who of the pottery world -- Yoshida Kozo, Hayashiya Seizo, Hasebe Mitsuhiko, and Inui Yoshiaki to name a few. I think they did a fine job of selecting the prize winners -- the big names were all on the invitation list and didn't have to go through the scrutiny of the judge's eyes.

I attended the awards ceremony on the opening day, which was well attended, and as always, this exhibition will attract a large crowd.

Photo of Exhibition Visitors

After Tokyo the exhibition moves to Osaka Shinsaibashi Daimaru from June 7 to June 12. Admission is 800 yen. A nice color catalog is available -- all essays in Japanese but the color photos have the names in English. If anyone would like to see about getting a copy please contact me.

For much more, please visit the
PHOTO TOURS page. It includes links to other wonderful photo tours, including prior Japan Ceramic Society events, Living National Treasures, Contemporary Artists, How the Japanese Rank Their Potters, plus other visual resources.

Awards Index -- Our Entire Lineup of Online Photo Tours



Copyright - Robert Yellin Yakimono Gallery

Our Address and Contact Numbers

pot logo tiny

Home | e-Store | Who's Who | What's What | Where | Guidebook | Newsletter | About Us

Site design and maintenance by Onmark Productions