Wednesday, January 27, 2010

The still, small voice

Sometimes you just have to stop and be disconcerted by beauty.

Blue bowl - stoneware, circa 1965. Height 6.4 inches.
Stoneware pot with pitted glaze, circa 1967. Height 11 inches.

Photographs from the November, 1989 Connoisseur, by Yasuhiro Ishimoto for the exhibition Issey Miyake meets Lucie Rie.


  1. I'm admiring the shape of the blue bowl, thinking of all the practical uses for the shape, the bowl being least practical. Won't it tip over? I like the uncanny crossover. So while I'm admiring the shape, the artist might be proudest of the color.

  2. It's enough to see the beauty of these ceramics in an isolated way,
    but the idea of "U-Tsu-Wa" as a Japanese word to know more important than manga,
    tsunami, sushi - was the reward for following your link!

  3. Terry - I once held a Lucie Rie bowl and it was the most balanced of objects, physically and spiritually.

    le style et la matiere - thank you for your comment. I too found that link very informative.

    Down East Dilettante - I could not agree more.

  4. i am in a curmudgeonly mood today and want to tell you that I am neither inclined towards Issey Miyake or, particularly, Lucy Rie. I am much more impressed by Yoshi Yamamoto and Japanese ceramicists
    doing what Japanese do best.

  5. Dear Curmudgeon - I don't care one way or t'other about Miyake but Lucie Rie I really do care for. That whole generation, including Bernard Leach, Shoji Hamada et al, remain very impressive still, at least to me. I met Leach years ago (which has nothing to do with the case) and have a bottle his wife Janet made in the 1970s.

  6. Blue, I know it's daft to write someone off at one stroke. I can't help it,
    I find that iconic form of hers, the blue bowl, unsatisfactory in a way I can't explain - maybe to do with its logic-defying stem and look of instability. I have always admired Bernard Leach - his work is more robust, somehow less contrived. I am fumbling here to express something which I suppose just comes down to taste? Or proportion maybe. I would like to hear about your meeting with BL.