Wednesday, February 2, 2011


Here is a short video, but a good visual introduction to Shigaraki master potter, Kohyama Yasuhisa (1936). Kohyama-san was the first potter to build an anagama in the Shigaraki valley since the middle ages and his work and firing techniques are unquestionably a blend of the old and the very new. His works have been collected by museums around the world.

I was very fortunate to study and work with Kohyama-sensei for a while in Japan in 1993 as well as spending time with him at the Cleveland Institute of Art and Kent State University while he was a visiting artist here in the US. I was there through his preparation for a major show in the Netherlands and participated in firing his anagama kiln. It certainly was a wonderful experience and one I will never forget.

This short and somewhat grainy video was shot at SOFA, New York in 2008.

There is a very nice article on Kohyama-san that can be seen on Steve Beimel’s weblog;