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An early piece from the Mudai series by Takiguchi Kazuo enclosed in the original signed wooden box. Unlike his later works which featured stone-like glazes, this glaze is soft and crinkled on the surface, like an undersea life form.
It is 15-1/2 x 8 x 10 inches (39 x 20.5 x 25 cm) and is in excellent condition.
Kazuo is an exceedingly sought after Kyoto artist, one of the heirs of the original Sodeisha movement. Born in 1953, he studied economics at Doshisha Univesity while making a brief sojourn into the studio of Kiyomizu Rokubei. However it was later under Yagi Kazuo at the Kyoto University of Art that he would begin to find his feet in the mud. He then went abroad to study at the Royal College of Art, graduating in 1982. The awards began rolling in in 1985, with prizes at the Nihon Togei Ten National Ceramics Exhibition and the Nihon Shin Kogei Ten New Crafts Exhibition. The following year was the Chunichi Kokusai Togei Ten and Kyoto Prefectural Arts and Crafts Association Exhibition. From there the list grows exponentially, including the JCS award, one of the most coveted prizes of them all. And he has been collected by a numbe of important institutions. According to a description from the V&A Museum in London:
For Takiguchi Kazuo, the young Kyoto-based maker of the large stoneware vessel, the development of a personal sculptural idiom has been closely associated with the pioneering of a particular method of hand-building.
The technique involves preparing a large sheet of extremely thin clay that is then folded and joined in a dynamic sequence of movements into a structure immediately resembling that of the intended final form. In the mid-1980s, when Takiguchi first used the technique, he lifted the clay up from the floor. Because this limited him to rather box-like shapes he went on to develop a way of draping the clay over moulds made from loosely assembled components and making his forms upside down. The new method allowed him to achieve the greater sense of fullness that he sought. At the same time the possibility of rearranging the components of the moulds allowed him to experiment with a much wider range of shapes than before. Having made a basic form, Takiguchi uses a number of secondary techniques to give it definition and character. These include pushing the walls out from the inside, compressing them from the outside, and cutting and joining, sometimes with the addition or removal of segments of clay.
Takiguchi's exploration of formal issues of shape, colour and texture through the making of individual works has been accompanied by his growing interest in the relationship between his sculptures and the surroundings in which they are displayed. When he is preparing for an exhibition he begins by making an exhaustive study of the venue using sketches, photographs and videos. It is only then that he starts to make any work. He develops his forms with the aim of creating an environment in which sculptures and surroundings are integrated into a single whole. The nature of a given series of work is determined by the process of planning for a particular exhibition and the total installation, usually incorporating an arrangement of props especially prepared for the occasion, is presented as an artistic statement in its own right.