Yamaguchi Ryuun was born in Saga prefecture and graduated in bamboo craft from the Beppu Vocational School in 1957. At the age of twenty-three he was apprenticed to Living National Treasure Shono Shousai. In 1967 won the Award of Excellence at the New Work Exhibition for Bamboo Products.
Numerous awards and honors followed including Beppu City Mayor’s Awards and Oita Prefecture Governor’s Awards. He was admitted to the Japan New Craft Arts Exhibition in 1987 and since has been admitted ten times. In 1990 he was included in the Paris Top Artist Award competition, and in 1993 he won the Northern Kyushu Private Art Museum Award at the Japan New Craft Arts Exhibition. He was admitted to Nitten for the first time in 1994 and again 1997. He has twice won the Oita Art Association’s Best Award.
From his studio in Oita he says, “Frankly speaking, I never thought of the possibility of begin an artist until I apprenticed with the first Living National Treasure in bamboo arts, Shono Shusai. His example deeply inspired me to express myself. Even now, it is a great struggle for me with each new piece. I feel the beauty of the flowers. I feel the beauty of water flow. I try to bring that flow into my pattern. At first I was very surprised that people wanted to collect my work in the West, but now it has given me more confidence as an artist.”