Welcome to the final part of our look into the Harajuku select shop Acryl Bones (part one / part two), this time we are going to be looking at a temporary addition to the shop in their gallery space “white”. Occupying it on our visit was the first ever exhibition of renowned potter Imanari Seiichi’s “Kaioku” series of sculptures and objects. Applying his traditional Japanese pottery techniques to skulls and bones is a logical match for a space with “bones” in the title, and his rough hand-made style too was a perfect match for the shop interior.
As regular readers of Tokyo Telephone will know, I (Samuel) am a big fan of pottery (more here courtesy of Maruoka’s wonderful Antideath series) and Rebecca is a seriously good ceramic artist in her own right so this is right up our alley, but whether you appreciate the function or form of the following, hopefully we will make pottery converts of you by the end of this:
The majority of his new work is themed on primate and dinosaur skulls, which can mostly be opened to be used as boxes or candle/incense burners as well. The smaller scale and lower pricing is a definite winner for us in our tiny Tokyo apartment, and a big change from a potter who is known for making deep-sea dwelling fish some 2 metres long.
These cute flower pots are made as a closed egg shape, and then very carefully cracked open to ensure the organic feel is not lost (I bet for every successful one, there were at least 5 failures in the cracking process!).
These are some of Imanari Seiichi’s previous designs, which always remind me of some kind of Junji Ito’s creations – though I would still have one in the house quite happily.
This kind of Japanese earthenware has a really nice texture and weight to it and is a great match for the fossilized surface of the original inspiration.
If you want to see more from this talented chap then he has a website here, and I am very glad that Acryl Bones has seen it fit to include this kind of accesible art in their shop as it really does enrich the whole shopping experience and further remove it from the relentless cut prices and consumerism that their Harajuku neighbors typify. Saying that, with prices as low as 2000-odd yen and some of the larger ones coming in at 5000 yen I could be tempted…