Many times I have passed by what I though was a new piece of pottery because to me it looked cheap. Have you done the same, seen a vase that is unglazed to the eye and looks like it was made yesterday, and just kept walking? The browns, tans, blacks and dark green colors just didn't say anything to you so they didn't get a second look. I hope that you will rethink those decisions in the future after reading this blog.
Thinking back, I don't have any idea how many times I have seen pieces of pottery with that oriental look sitting on a table and even when I did elect to pick them up and found a signature, I quickly set them back down. But no more, because I am going to introduce you to Toshiko Takaezu who is a master at combining Eastern and Western culture into her pottery. She was born in Hawaii in 1929 and is of Japanese descent. This lady is willing to take on any dimension when it comes to her pottery, with some of her pieces measuring over 6 ft tall. Not only is she a very gifted potter, but teaching at Princeton for over 23 years makes her one of the leading scholars on pottery in the United States.
I am continually amazed at how little I know and how much there is to learn. The wonderful thing about this knowledge that we can receive is that it is free and with every new thing we learn it gives us a new chance to make money. You can learn more about Toshiko Takaezu in the book "Toshiko Takaezu - The Earthen Bloom". I suggest that you see if it can be purchased used on Amazon or Abebooks. Also, here is a site [ Toshiko Takaezu ] that can give you additional information on this amazing artist.
Here is why it might be worth your time to find out more about Takaezu. I will list three of her pieces that have sold at auction. First, a piece called “Moonpot”, that measures just 10 ½ inches and is signed, bears an Oriental look and unglazed with white and tan coloring sold at Rago Auction 4/12/2008 for $16,000. Second, “Ceramic Vessel” measuring just 8 inches with the Oriental look, colored tan, black ,white and brown with an open top sold at Rago 4/22/2006 for $9600 and last but not least a garden seat sold at Butterfield's on 6/10/2005 for $7600. I have to admit I would not have given any of these pieces a second glance but that is the past. Watch me now as people ask each other why I am taking the time to look at those pieces.
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