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Japanese ceramics, haiku poetry highlight upcoming Carnegie events
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The Nature, Tradition, and Innovation: Contemporary Japanese Ceramics from the Gordon Brodfuehrer Collection is at the Carnegie Arts Center and features several pieces including this one by Tetsuya Ishiyama, titled Lidded Water Vessel. - photo by Photo Contributed



The Carnegie Arts Center presents the first instalment of the Fall 2017 Sunday Arts Lectures with renowned ceramic artist, John Toki Toki.

The lecture is scheduled for 2 p.m. Sunday and is free to the public.

Toki has selected a number of ceramic works from “Nature, Tradition, and Innovation: Contemporary Japanese Ceramics from the Gordon Brodfuehrer Collection,” on view in the Ferrari Gallery, and will discuss his views on what he believes has shaped the artist’s aesthetics. Such as influences based on the geography of Japan — gardens and waterfalls, religion, kimono designs, calligraphy, and music. He will also provide insight into the artist’s ceramic process focusing on glazes, clay types, and kiln firing and how it has affected surface color and texture.


Toki has maintained a studio in Richmond since 1974, working primarily as a large-scale ceramic sculptor. Blue Back, a twenty-foot tall ceramic sculpture is on view at the Oakland Museum of California. In 2018, the sculpture Hertogenbosch will be installed at the new University of California Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive, in Berkeley. A one-person exhibition is scheduled at the Natsoulas Gallery, Davis, California, and a fountain will be installed for the City of Richmond, California. Exhibitions include the Contemporary Art Center, Cincinnati, Richmond Art Center, California, Los Angeles County Arboretum Sculpture Exhibition, Maloof Foundation, and at the American Museum of Ceramic Art, Pomona, California.


Toki has lectured widely and served as a workshop leader at the John Michael Kohler Arts Center Arts Industry Program, Wisconsin, and as a staff member at the European Ceramic Work Center, Holland. He recently conducted a welded steel sculpture workshop for the Sogetsu Chapter (flower arrangers) - Ikebana International, in San Francisco.


Toki has been a textbook writer for over 25 years and is presently working with Oxford University Press. He has co-authored three books on ceramics: “Hands In Clay, 5th edition,” “Make It In Clay 2nd edition,” McGraw Hill, and “Fired by Ideals, Arequipa Pottery,” Pomegranate Press.


In 2013, Toki was the recipient of the National Council on the Education of Ceramic Arts, Outstanding Achievement Award, Houston, Texas. In addition to his art practice, Toki is the Associate Director of the Mission Clay Art and Industry Program, Corona, California, and is Sales Director for Laguna Clay Company. He supports the arts as a board member for The American Museum of Ceramic Art, in Pomona.


The Carnegie will continue exploring art inspired and from Japan at the Family Friday Series with a presentation on haiku poetry. With the helpful encouragement of Modesto's Poet Laureate Stella Beratlis and poets from the Modesto Stanislaus Poetry Center participants will learn about and practice the art of haiku poetry.

This event is free and is set for 7 p.m. Sept. 29 at the Carnegie Arts Center.