Over twenty large-scale sculptures and installations by Toshiko Takaezu challenge traditional boundaries between craft and fine art. Working primarily in clay, Takaezu has played a pivotal role in redefining conventional methods of ceramics; closing the mouths of her “pots,” Takaezu distanced her works from their presumed functionality. Takaezu’s organic and expressively painted and glazed artworks draw on the natural world, Japanese tea ceremonies, and Zen philosophy. Experimenting with size and scale, her later works are monumental in form, making them familiar yet mysterious.
Born in 1922 in Pepeekeo, Hawaii, Takaezu trained at the Hawaii Potters Guild before pursuing degrees at the University of Hawaii in Honolulu and the Cranbrook Academy of Art in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan.