English 日本語 (Japanese)

Damien Boaglio

I arrived in Japan from France in 2003, and settled in Miharu Town in 2004. Before coming to Japan, I must confess I had no interest in ceramics, not in a negative sense, but rather I had never thought about it or even noticed it much. That changed. At an exhibition of traditional Japanese crafts in Tokyo, I was taken by the patterns and shapes, the "unbalanced balance", which almost seemed modern to me, but dated back centuries in Japan. A teabowl particularly struck me. It was covered in white glaze, with splashes of black glaze, and its shape was slightly distorted. The effect was powerful, yet not aggressive. From then on, I started noticing pottery more and more, until I decided I wanted to make some myself.

At about that time, I met Masakazu Kusakabe in Miharu, and his powerfully shaped, slightly asymetrical vessels covered in natural ash glaze from several-day wood firings immediately struck a chord in me. The infinite nuances and unpredictability of the effects are a constant source of wonder. At places, the ash melts and yields a smooth green or brown glass surface, at other places, where the ash built up inside the kiln and buried the pots, the ash forms stone-like grey and purple concretions. Sometimes, little ash reaches the pots, but the flames leave the brownish red marks of their passage as they swirl inside the kiln, often resulting in surprisingly dynamic patterns...

In my free time, I go to Masakazu Kusakabe's studio and practice making pottery. Below are a few of my pieces, which I present here very (very very) humbly.