Saturday, March 29, 2014

Sara Original 25th Anniversary Tote Bag

It is with great joy and excitement that we head towards our store’s 25th anniversary.
In celebration and appreciation for your continued support, we made our original tote bag.
They are strong and durable and perfect to use for your shopping at Sara!

* W 18" x H 14" x D3"1/2 , $20

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Tommy Yoshizawa Jazz Photographs in 70's-80's

Tommy Yoshizawa
- Jazz Photographs
in 70's~80's -
April 11th Fri. - 15th Tue.
Artist Reception, April 11th 6 pm - 8 pm
"the photographer who does not press the shutter"

We are pleased to announce that Sara Japanese Pottery will present the third in a series of event to celebrate our 25th years anniversary.
This exhibition will feature the photographer, Tommy Yoshizawa.

This year Tommy is 65 year old, already one of my very long friends.
He has a slender frame, upturned eyes, and, for whatever reason, has always been popular among women.
In 1972, he came to New Jersey as an employee of Tokyo Kougaku and as a huge fan of jazz music.  At the time, John Coltrane had already passed away from this world. Tommy, a fan of jazz music, started frequenting small clubs and taking photos where other musicians gathered and performed.

When the New York Times wrote about a show at Slug's Saloon, Lee Morgan’s first show out of jail, Tommy quickly got his hands on tickets. He arrived early to the show and by chance the waitress from the Village Gate who knew Tommy was working that night at Slag Saloon. She recognized Tommy and sat him at the very front.
"I'm sure she had good intentions seating me in the very front, but the seats were too close.  It was no good.  The seats were too close and I couldn't take any photos.  So, I figured I'd come back tomorrow and take them.  I had tickets for the next day's show too."
That night he watched only the first set and went home without taking any photos. And that night, during a break on stage, Lee Morgan was shot and killed by his de facto wife. 

"I couldn't do it.  Even though I had the chance, I couldn't take the picture."

Although this is how Tommy articulates that event, there in front of him is the picture.
While the musicians are playing they fall in a trance.  It is that instant that he wants to capture.
Once Miles Davis turned to Tommy and called to him, "Take my picture."  Miles posed for the shot and Tommy answered, "No," and did not press the shutter. 

This is an exhibition of original prints by Tommy Yoshizawa, the photographer who does not press the shutter. They are the photos he took and the photos he developed.
An exhibition I would very much love for you all to see.

* Open Hour *
April 11th, Fri.  10 am - 8 pm   Opening Reception  6pm - 8pm
April 12th, Sat. 12 pm - 6 pm
April 13th, Sun. Closed
April 14th, Fri.  10 am - 7 pm
April 15th, Fri.  10 am - 7 pm

Monday, March 24, 2014

Ginette Glass Tumblers : A One-time Offer!

The multi faced design and subtle coloring is a beautiful accent to any dining set.
It is a one-time offer, the shorter glasses are now 25% OFF.
Offers valid while supplies last, don't miss the chance!
And please feel free to contact us if you have any questions.

Ginette Tumbler Tall
Tan, Indigo, Clear, Carbon (from left to right)
φ3"1/2 x H 4"3/4,  15oz
$48 each

Ginette Tumbler Short
φ3"1/4 x H3"1/2, 10oz
$46$34.50 each (One-time Offer!)

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

" Searching My LIfe " Essay by Shumpei Yamaki

To have a joint exhibit with Tim Rowan, "Exchanging Fire," at Sara Japanese Pottery means a great deal to me. Tim is a significant role model who appeared in my life when I needed an example of an independent working ceramic artist.

When I lived in Brooklyn, I was an adjunct professor seeking my goal of becoming a full time professor. Frequently Tim invited me to be part of his wood firing crew. Regularly working with him after graduate school had a huge impact on me. He lives his life beautifully. I was intrigued by Tim's studio potter life. He distinguished himself as a "studio potter" rather than a production potter and proved this life was possible. Four consecutive years of working with Tim has taught me not only how to operate your pottery business but also to simply enjoy clay.

The first time I met Tim Rowan was when he came to my university to do the workshop in 2003.

My preconceived notion of a studio potter's aura did not apply to his appearance. He seemed more like he was already a friend of mine, a collage classmate.

At the time, my biggest concern was how to become a self-supported artist.
(It is still my biggest concern, on a different level.)
It was a great opportunity to meet the various ceramic artists who visited our campus, so I could ask what they learned about being successful.
Looking back, it was a rude question.
But I asked him this question while he was demonstrating his box-making method.

This was my first verbal contact with Tim.

"Do you cover all your living expenses by selling work?"

Tim answered,
"Well... this month I did.... and last month I did." With a smile and nod which is just like Tim.

This comment opened my eyes to alternative life style.
It is ok to have loose life, not knowing much about future, but trusting your instinct.

I immediately said to myself "I like his life."

"This world is where I came to seek myself.
This world is where I came to see myself."
by Japanese historical potter Kawai Kanjiro.

Personally I have not found the way to be a self-supporting studio potter.
However, this world is where I discover myself and my way; this is what the world favors.


- Shumpei Yamaki
Tall Tumblers
Exchanging Fire
φ3"3/4 x H 5"3/4

Exchanging Fire
φ 4"1/4 x H 6"1/2

Wood-fired Jar
φ10"1/2 x H 8"1/2


Friday, March 14, 2014

Sculptural Box by Tim Rowan

For Tim and Shumpei's show, "Exchanging Fire," last December right after the snowstorm I made my way up to Tim's studio, in Woodbridge, New York.  It must be somewhere around 15 years ago when Sara first began showing Tim's artwork.  But even so, this was the first time since then that I went to his studio.  About two hours from New York City, driving on paved roads and then onto dirt roads, after a while we arrived at Tim's studio.
The studio is well organized and surrounding the kiln are all of his tools.  Whichever one you pick up, in an instant you can sense what an exceptional artist he is.
“ I no longer use a wheel because a wheel ends up restricting the form.”
Words that left an impression on me.  
Now then, this box.
Tim's artwork may be representative of the surface texture from a Bizen-style anagama firing, but the moment you glance at this piece your mood drifts to different place.
"Has this piece even been fired yet?"  I asked.
"It was fired in an electric kiln, and then polished." Tim answered.
To which I responded, "What?  I've never seen something like this!"
Whether or not I typically touch a fired surface, in the world of pottery that I am accustomed to I was stunned by this instance.  Cutting out a large mass of clay that was kneaded and compressed by nature alone, he took great caution to cut the shape of the box.  After firing it in an electric kiln, carefully applying the polish, whites, browns, and grays became more prominent in color and pattern on the surface.
Tim is not a potter.  It is more accurate to call him a sculptor.

* size : W 5" x D 4"1/2 x H 8"1/2

Tim と Shumpeiのショー " Exchanging Fire"を開催するにあたって、
それなのに、その時が初めての訪問であった。New Yorkから約2時間、舗装された道路から、土の道へ入ってしばらく行くと彼のスタジオに到着した。





Wednesday, March 12, 2014

New Items Hand-Blown Murrini Glass

New items, hand-blown Murrini glass cups from Kanagawa, Japan.
Each one is neatly and carefully made with highly skilled technique.
Please stop by and take a look, you will be amazed how they are beautifully made.

Lace Glass Tumbler
Beige( left ) White( right )
φ3"1/4 x H 3"1/2

Black Striped Shot Glass
φ2"1/2 x H3"

Kanoko Shot Glass
φ2"3/8 x H 2"3/4

Monday, March 10, 2014

Lacquer Panel "Gerbera" by Gen Saratani

It was clear that the number of people who came to hear Gen's discussion and Q&A session at Sara Japanese Pottery was far beyond our expectations.  He carefully explained how his own artistry, restoration work, and the foundations of lacquer ware all come together.
The Lacquer Panels are his original pieces that debuted at this event.
Just the other day, I went to his workshop in Queens, New York, and at the time the two panels were only covered in the red and black backgrounds.  He told me he planned to paint a gerbera on the panels, and showed me the flower he designed on his computer.
"A few days ago, I bought a beautiful gerbera at the farmer's market, so I used that for the design."  On the kitchen table, there was a gerbera arrangement. 
The gerbera is lacquered in a milk tea color, coated with multiple layers of deep gray.  A single stem is painted on a deeply saturated red lacquer panel, and another single stem is painted in a customary black lacquer panel.
The gerbera on the red panel faces up and at an angle with one flower petal in gold as an accent.  The black panel has a gerbera that casts its face downward with one gold flower petal that has fallen.
With this composition, the raised lacquer flower against the exquisite contrast of the rich and elegant background colors, red and black, it seems that I am not alone in drawing upon the feelings of "aspiration" and "isolation".

Saturday, March 1, 2014

Thank you for Coming to Gen's Talk Event

Thank you for coming to last night's event.
We were so thrilled to see everyone come and support one of our artist, Gen Saratani.
We did not anticipate such a large crowd and apologize to our guests who were unable to come into our store.
Gen Saratani's restoration pieces and original art work are still on display at the store.
Please come by and we are more than happy to answer any of your questions.
Hope you have a wonderful weekend.


Hananoki-gama Nanban Mizusashi
by Kazu Oba
with Gen's Restoration

Hikarigama Unglazed Bowl
by Malcolm Wright
with Gen's Restoration

Bowl by Takashi Nakazato
with Gen's Restoration

Miles Davis
Lacquered Panel
Gen Saratani's Original Work

Lacquered Panel
Gen Saratani's Original Work

Lacquered Panel
Gen Saratani's Original Work

更谷源 "修復の美学" - Gen Saratani "The Aesthetics of Restoration"

Discover a Traditional Method as Contemporary Art
更谷源に会ったのは2年位前だったか、ジュエラーの新倉憲明氏を誘って彼を尋ねたのが最初だった。新倉氏がNew YorkのSoFaショーで見た漆作品の話を始めると、”あぁ、きっとそれは僕の父です”と言った。

しかし、日本の伝統工芸の世界は必ずしも彼に好意的ではなかったようで、2012年、新天地を求めNew Yorkにやって来た。
New Yorkには数多くの修復の必要なものが潜在的にあるだろうということは分かっていても、どのように自分を知らしめ、注文を取るかが難しいところである。

技術も去ることながら、そのセンスがずば抜けているのである。 例えば欠けた陶器などの修復の際に見せる絶妙な遊び心、大抵の人は壊れる前よりも好きに なったと言い、喜んで持ち帰る。壊れたものは決して元には戻らないが、源の修復はそれを超えて、あたかもオリジナルを作った作家とのコラボレーションをし ているようにも感じられる。大切なものを壊してしまった持ち主が、そのものに以前よりも増して愛情を持てるまでにしてしまう。

  ”日本で修復依頼を受けると細部まで細かく注文される事が多いですね。New Yorkでは、あまり細かいことは言われません。”