Scenes of Lightness: Works by Yukiya Izumita
Izumita begins his day standing on a beach in the northern Tōhoku region of Japan. He travels back and forth along the path that leads to his studio, carrying salt-rich clay and wishing that ‘the clay could be lighter.’ Heavy and light, living and dying, he searches for a comfortable spot, halfway between opposites. ‘Energy is like the heart, like the beginning of the universe, it is concentrated on the inside, then expands eternally into the outside.’ Izumita takes the five basic elements—Fire, Earth, Water, Air and Void, perceiving each of them as a function of vibration, awareness, flow, movement and balance then tries to form them into shapes.
Izumita’s representative series, ‘Sekisoh Layers’ consists of numerous interwoven layers of clay that seem to float, the dry, white glaze serving to create a greater impression of lightness. The ‘Kikakei (Geometric)’ series represents what are probably the structural limits that can be achieved using clay. The process of Izumita’s creation is a journey to find the ultimate balance between the shape he wants to produce and the physiology of the clay, his work evolving endlessly.
After a successful exhibition in 2017, Surface Folds, Ippodo Gallery is pleased to once again present Yukiya Izumita's work in Scenes of Lightness. Featuring work from both his Sekisoh and Fold series; the exhibition shows Izumita's continuous exploration of complex forms.
Izumita's pieces exhibited carry a quality of weightlessness and ethereal flow; however, they also conjure a feeling of monumentality, like that of ancient landmarks conveying the profound passage of time. Picking up one of Izumita's tea bowls, one can experience both a sense of lightness and weighted warmth. As layered waves push through solid forms, Izumita's pieces breathe, like gentle wind blowing through a dense forest, his pieces remind us to appreciate the small moments of nature.
Yukiya Izumita, trained in Kokuji-ware under Gakuho Shimodake in 1992, opened his own workshop in Noda Village, Iwate Prefecture, on the border with the northern ceramic production area of Aomori Prefecture in 1995. Izumita has a lengthy career, with extensive claim in Japan. His international acclaim began when he participated in SOFA New York in 2005, in New Mexico, and finally Ippodo Gallery in both 2012 and 2017. In Japan, Izumita has been the recipient of numerous accolades such as the Excellence Award at the 20th Biennial Japan Ceramic Art Exhibition in 2009, as well as the Grand Prix at the Asahi Ceramic Exhibitions of 2000 and 2002.
His work are currently featured in the public collections of Yale University Art Gallery, Philadelphia Museum of Art, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Iwate Museum of Art, and Tokonomae City Board of Education.