After his 2009 and 2011 quickly sold-out exhibitions at Heath Ceramics Los Angeles, Japanese master potter Akio Nukaga returns to Heath, only this time in San Francisco.
“Very New Work” marks the first show and celebration of the soon-to-open Heath showroom and gallery in the city’s Northeast Mission neighborhood.
His show will kick off with an Opening Reception on Saturday, July 14th from 5-9pm at Heath San Francisco, 550 Florida Street (at 18th Street).
Heath will also host Nukaga for a throwing demonstration Sunday, July 15th at 2pm.
The show runs through September 5th.
In addition to the more familiar forms he has been working with for many years, this show will highlight Nukaga’s investigation of new forms that are very loosely inspired by his interest in Cubism. Despite his virtuoso status in Japan, prior to his 2009 exhibition in Los Angeles, Nukaga had remained relatively unknown in the United States. But now, after two sold-out shows stateside, his quietly elegant and entirely functional one-of-a-kind hand-thrown pots and vessels have gained a reputation as clean, contemporary pieces, transcending traditional Japanese pottery.
Employing the 200-year-old tradition of Kasama (a region in Japan known for its rich ceramic history), Nukaga’s work exudes a sense of warmth derived from the rust-colored clay mined from this local area. Says Heath Los Angeles Studio Director Adam Silverman, who first saw Nukaga’s work in 2006 while in Mashiko, Japan: “I see Akio’s work as real country pottery (in the best possible meaning of the term) but with a very sophisticated and refined design aesthetic—a rare combination.”