November 12, 2013–September 8, 2014

Fired Earth, Woven Bamboo

Contemporary Japanese Ceramics and Bamboo Art

Sculptural beauty and technical flair highlight Japanese ceramics and baskets from the Snider Collection

During the last decade, the exciting shapes and technical finesse in Japanese contemporary ceramics and baskets have attracted new audiences among Western enthusiasts. Recently attention has centered on more abstract works produced by modern ceramic and bamboo artists, including pioneering female ceramists, who, beginning in the 1950s, turned to abstract sculpture or architecture for their inspiration, creating innovative, expressive sculptural pieces rooted in traditional materials and techniques but that transcend utilitarian forms. “Fired Earth, Woven Bamboo” celebrates contemporary Japanese decorative arts at the MFA, thanks to the recent gift of works spanning the late 20th and early 21st centuries from Stanley and Mary Ann Snider. More than 60 dramatic ceramics and baskets from the Snider Collection are complemented by contemporary Japanese quilts and fabric screens and an example of sophisticated paper sculpture, highlighting the revolution in these traditional media in creative abstraction.

Above: Sakurai Yasuko, Vertical Flower, Heisei era, 2007. Porcelain. Stanley and Mary Ann Snider Collection.

  • Arts of the Pacific Gallery (Gallery 177)


With generous support from the Jean S. and Frederic A. Sharf Exhibition Fund.