I am starting a series on artists that I love and inspire me. This is, of course, only my personal view about these wonderful people and their work, and I wanted to make clear that it will be subjective by nature. It’s something like a fan letter to the artists I respect and admire. Please let me know if there is any misinformation.
One of my all time favorite artist since I started working in clay is a Japanese contemporary potter, Shiro Tsujimura (辻村史朗).
Shiro Tsujimura was born in 1947, in the town of Gose, Nara prefecture, Japan. His first love was oil painting and when he was 18 years old, he aspired to become a painter. For a short time, he considered becoming a Zen monk, and entered a monastery and underwent formal training. During that time he had a dramatic encounter with a historic Ido teabowl. The teabowl grabbed his heart, and redirected his life: Shiro Tsujimura decided to become a potter, at the young age of 22.
8 years later, after moving back to his hometown and teaching himself in the discipline of clay, Shiro Tsujimura had his first exhibition at his own residence. He has produced a high quality body of work and is recognized in Japan and abroad.
Shiro Tsujimura defies working in set categories, and he makes Ido, Kohiki, Oku Gorai, Shigaraki, Iga, Shino, Kuro Oribe and Setoguro style pots with amazing skill and fierce intensity.
It appears that Shiro Tsujimura works in traditional Japanese ceramics genres, but at the same time he is one of the rare artists who is not restricted by them. The way that he touches clay speaks directly to my core. If you have a chance to see his work in person, you will see what I mean.
More of Shiro Tsujimura’s work can be seen at: