While riding the Shinkansen train from Tokyo on my way home to Kyoto (a few days before the earthquake), I made a special stop at Mishima, in order to visit the Robert Yellin Gallery, a must stop for contemporary Japanese ceramics enthusiasts. Robert’s gallery is a surprisingly convenient way to see significant works by dozens of today’s top Japanese ceramic artists, all in one place. Amongst pieces by such internationally recognized ceramic greats as Kohyama Yoshihisa, Kaneta Masanao and Kato Yasukage, were younger artists like Kako Katsumi, whom I recently met at a group show at Takashimaya in Kyoto.
Tea bowl by Kako Katsumi
What is most impressive about the gallery is the wide variety of ceramic styles, from warm unglazed pieces, to soft glazed Hagi ware and stunning celadon, all displayed in a large, naturally lit room.
Robert promised to write a blog post for us about Yamada Kaku, a Mino-style artist whose studio I took Santa Fe artist Gail Rieke’s travel journal group, last November, when we were in rural Fukui Prefecture.
Robert Yellin is one of the world’s authorities on Japanese ceramics. A resident of Japan for nearly 30 years, he has played a central role in the introduction of cutting-edge Japanese artists to the world as an author, lecturer and gallery owner. His website, http://www.e-yakimono.net, serves as a primary source of information for thousands of ceramic enthusiasts, worldwide.