Jun Kaneko is a Japanese ceramist living in Omaha, Nebraska. His painting background is evident in his work where the three-dimensional piece becomes an inflated canvas. The ceramics shown above are called “dangos”, Japanese for dumplings or closed forms. The pieces look like vases without holes but they are actually enormous in scale and can easily weigh up to 1000 pounds. In an article on Venice Clay Artists he says this about the scale:
“So when I’m making small piece, I don’t want to give a chance to the viewer to step back and then look around and look at my piece. I just want them to just grab right into it. They look at it. They’re drawn to it. Just go straight into the piece. If that was possible, this viewer is not outside the work anymore. They’re feeling inside the work. Therefore, they can’t compare this and that. They are it.”
“So that’s why I think, if I did make a small piece to draw people immediately into the piece, I call that a pretty successful piece for me as a small object. And then, I call that a spiritual scale. So that’s my interest. And it goes same way to the large-scale piece, too, in a lot of ways, because as I said, if you start comparing with nature, then the big piece could be just like a dust. So the point to the scale, to make a sense as a visual artist, is just pull them into it. Then, they just don’t have a chance to compare. They will become the thing itself almost.”
Images: Courtesy of Jun Kaneko.