“Firing the Beatles” Exhibition
August 25, 2016 - September 03, 2016
Coming from a father, Shinpei Asai, who is a photographer, and a grandfather who is a potter based in the city of Seto, the genes of creativity have passed on to son/grandson, Ryusuke Asai, who became a ceramic artist. He is a dynamic artist, who also happens to be a musician, and produces classical tea bowls with an ever so nuanced, minimalist approach while taking great care in the expression of each piece.
His works sometimes possess the essence of Koetsu, Kizaemon, or Raku Kichizaemon, but they also have an international flair.
Asai’s world unfolds under the theme, ‘firing the Beatles’, which is an homage to the eponymous rock band. Tea bowls titled after various Beatles songs will be exhibited.
Ryusuke Asai (b. 1966) is the son of Shinpei Asai, who was the official photographer for the Beatles in Japan. Asai formed his own band and still likes to sing John Lennon's 'Imagine'. Being that his grandfather and uncle were both potters, he had contact in the field from an early age. He first worked with clay while he was a student at Dartington Hall School, a British public school situated in the county of Devon, where the famous British potter, Bernard Leach, once built a kiln and also worked as a teacher. After graduating from Waseda University, he attended the Department of Art at Goldsmith's College of London University, where he studied pottery while devoting himself to contemporary art. During a trip back to Japan in 1991, he studied for a period under Ryoji Koie, allowing him to learn from Koie's artistic spirit (Koie is renown for transcending boundaries of Japanese tradition and art crafts as he works with clay). Later, after he returned permanently from England in 1994, he worked at the office of Shigeru Uchida, who was a leader of interior design at that time. Since then, he has continued to produce chic works, combining styles of East and West, classic and contemporary. Possessing elegance and subtle sensitivity, his tea bowls in the classical Oribe and Kuroraku styles have captured the hearts of Japan's young tea aficionados.