Studio Ikkoku – Functional Vessels by Japanese Artist Toshihisa Ishihara


I’ve spent the last few weeks travelling Japan and Australia, so it’s interesting to see the contrasting cultures that resides in both countries. Australia was a quite hard to condense down and get inspired from, as I think a lot of culture has vanished from the main metropolitan cities. But it’s been quite inspiring to reflect on it and to see the handicrafts that were made by the indigenous people of these lands. A lot of the crafts have a rustic charm and feel, but many of the shapes can still be seen in use today. Timeless objects.

I bumped in to the work of Japanese artist Toshihisa Ishihara and it reminded me how these old techniques can apply charm and character to the pieces. Toshihisa specialises in making objects from clay, and although he makes tableware, which I’m showcasing here today, he also mixes in sculpture and other quirky objects as well.

Born in Fukuoka, he built a firewood-burning kiln in the city of Miyawaka in 2000 and has since gone on to fire all his pieces in this kiln. Wood-fired kilns can sometimes produce unappealing tones on the surface of the pots, so I’m actually in awe of his skill to make works that are subtle and full of character. Here’s a selection of my favourites from his portfolio, more objets like this can be seen on his website linked below. Enjoy.