White Porcelain Faceted Jar, 2016; porcelain; h. 11 3/8 x dia. 11 1/8 in. (28.7 x 28.4 cm)

Maeta Akihiro (b.1954)

Living National Treasure (2013)

Maeta Akihiro is a highly influential artist and considered the leading white porcelain ceramicist of his generation. Maeta does not actually form his pieces on a potter’s wheel, but rather, uses the wheel only for the initial throw of his works. He forms the faceted designs in much of his pottery by hand, through free-form sculpting and molding with just fingers and palms. Then, in what is a contemplative process for Maeta, prior to the glazing process, he uses a single blade to trim and erase any traces or marks of his hand. Finally, the works are fired in a relatively low temperature gas kiln.

The resulting white porcelain sculptures are elegant tributes to simple beauty without excess. His works are unlike any other contemporary Japanese porcelain: pure, serene, and seemingly perfect. In 2007, he received the Medal with Purple Ribbon from the Emperor of Japan.

Maeta Akihiro (b.1954) Exhibits

Selected Exhibitions

Asia Week, New York, US
TEFAF, Maastricht, Netherlands
Treasures of the World from The British Museum, National Museum of Singapore, Singapore
Creating Handicrafts, Living National Treasures Exhibition, Wako, Tokyo, Japan
COLLECT, Saatchi Gallery, London, UK
Engendering Beauty, Preserving Techniques: Artworks by Living National Treasures, Tokyo National Museum, Tokyo, Japan
Beauty of KOGEI: Art Crafts in Japan, Japan Foundation Asia Center, Singapore
From Crafts to Kogei: In Commemoration of the 60th Japan Traditional Art Crafts Exhibition, National Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo National Museum, Tokyo, Japan
Contemporary Kōgei Styles in Japan, Morikami Museum and Japanese Gardens, Delray Beach, Florida, US

Selected Public Collection

British Museum, London, UK; Tokyo National Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo, Japan; Indianapolis Museum of Art, Indiana, US; MOA Museum of Art, Shizuoka, Japan; Imperial Household Agency, Japan; The Agency for Cultural Affairs, Japan; Tottori Prefectural Museum, Tottori, Japan; Ibaraki Ceramic Art Museum, Ibaraki, Japan; Museum of Modern Ceramic Art, Gifu, Japan; Higashihiroshima City Museum of Art, Hiroshima, Japan; Osaka University of Arts, Osaka, Japan; Everson Museum of Art, New York, US; Musée Ariana, Switzerland; Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia; Philadelphia Museum of Art, Pennsylvania, US; Auckland Museum, Auckland, New Zealand