Reverent Ceramic Master Honored in NC

Hiroshi’s “Twin Vase”, a monumental 2002 stoneware sculpture with crawl glaze

Hiroshi’s Twin Vase, a monumental 2002 stoneware sculpture with crawl glaze

Known for a strong pottery tradition, North Carolina’s Cameron Art Museum is paying tribute to a Japanese ceramic expert in Hiroshi Sueyoshi: Master of Reverence through September 6.

As a young artist who apprentices with ceramic masters of 1960s Japan, he was advised by folk artist Shoji Hamada to see as much of the world as he could before he turned 25.

In the early 1970s, he came to Asheboro to help build a pottery, trained with Japanese ceramic-artist ex-pats, worked at Seagrove, and landed teaching jobs at several North Carolina colleges.

By the end of the decade, he relocated to Wilmington, teaching and serving as an artist-in-resident at the Museum.

Although the show features the full scope of Hiroshi’s work, it exhibits the work of the ceramic artists who influenced him. Works by Rita Duckworth, Isamu Noguchi, Peter Voulkos, and Shoji Hamada are shown side-by-side with his own, demonstrating the tradition upon which he draws.

Rock Garden, a 2014 interpretation of a Zen garden made with hand-built “rocks”. He wants the viewer to be conscious of their surroundings

Rock Garden, Hiroshi’s 2014 interpretation of a Zen garden made with hand-built “rocks”.

Landscapes, biomorphic shapes, streams, voids, spirals, crackled surfaces, and Zen gardens – you’ll see and feel it all as you slowly work through the galleries. Find power in Hiroshi’s simplicity and lots of detail upon closer inspection.

The sculptures echoes of the primitive power of Brancusi and installations evoke the meditative calm of the Rothko Chapel. The museum has even hung up some of the coverings that Hiroshi uses for his pottery tables on the wall in the back gallery. Their subtle dust-ground, worked surfaces feel like subtle, magical Twombly atmospheres. So, even Hiroshi’s work cloths feel like art.

If you can’t make it to see this beautiful work in Wilmington, take a stroll through our Flickr site.

Biomorphic 2009 wall sculpture Blossom. Stoneware with crater and crawl glaze. Courtesy: New Hanover Library

Biomorphic 2009 wall sculpture Blossom. Stoneware with crater and crawl glaze. Courtesy: New Hanover Library

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