The work of a potter has traditionally been considered to be better suited for strong bodied men. Recently, however, the number of Japanese female ceramic artists has been steadily growing, with more entering the field by way of art universities than through apprenticeships. Sakurai Yasuko is one of the new wave of highly innovative female artists now grabbing a well deserved spotlight, both nationally and internationally. She was recently featured in the highly acclaimed exhibition Soaring Voices, currently touring the U.S., that surveys the work of 25 of Japan's top female ceramic artists.
Born and raised in Kyoto, the 40 year-old artist worked at L'ENAD de Limogesa as an Artist in Residence supported by scholarship of the French Government in the late 1990's. Her work is shown at the Joan B. Mirviss Ltd. gallery in New York. Sakurai-san focuses on white porcelain, creating both functional and non-functional pieces. Writes Mirviss of Sakurai-san's work: "These dramatic objects engage the viewer by juxtaposing light and shadow, and challenging the perception of interior and exterior spaces. Sakurai's stark white porcelain forms capture the simple beauty of light and shadow."
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