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Kuraoka Says to Know: Jun Kaneko

Jun Kaneko is a prolific artist and a master ceramic technician. Born in Japan in the early forties, Kaneko focused his early studies on painting. To continue his fine arts education, the artist made his way to the U.S. where an introduction to the late contemporary ceramic collector, Fred Marer, pushed Kaneko towards the pursuit of ceramic sculpture. Kaneko is most famous for his Dango series. Dango roughly translated from Japanese means dumpling, an undoubtedly perfect description of his larger than life sculptures. Not only are these pieces testament to the artist's unsurpassed skill in the artform of ceramics, but they are remarkable in color, design, shape, texture, and line as well. Kaneko's talent for painting shines brilliantly through his ceramic work. Though Kaneko's Dangos are his best known body of work, I find myself even more fond of his ceramic series Chunks, Wall Tiles, and Constructions. The artist's glasswork and costume design (yes costume design) work are equally phenomenal. You can find many images of these collections on his website. What I admire most about Jun Kaneko though, aside from his indelible contribution to the history and future of ceramic art, is that the artist's essence reads through every medium he chooses to use. A signature like that is the sign of a true master.

(images via Hill Gallery, the Contemporary Museum Honolulu, and the OBU Visual Art Blog)

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