Ceramicist Misako Kambe is featured artist at Portola Art Gallery in April

by Linda Hubbard Gulker on April 5, 2016

Beauty of Wood Fire, Vol. 2, carved ceramic creations by Menlo Park resident Misako Kambe, is the featured exhibit at the Portola Art Gallery in April. The exhibition includes Misako’s recent ceramic art works produced by wood firing at three kiln sites: Hikari-gama-kiln in Elkton, Oregon, Spring Valley Anagama in Milpitas and Richard Carter Studio in Napa.

Misako begins by hand carving her artwork using a variety of techniques. Next, natural wood ashes produced during the firing process deposit onto the carved, textured ceramic surface, making various and beautiful effects. Each firing produces a unique result, depending on the design of the kiln, season, temperature, humidity, density of the loading location in the kiln, quality of the wood, and the people who do the firing.

Kambe ceramic piece_2016“I’ve focused on the wood firing method for about 10 years, especially since I had transplant surgery five years ago,” Misado emails. “I am blessed myself with my new healthier life and focused on what I can do in my unique way.

“I integrate the beauty of Kimono design I was exposed to during my apprenticeship in the Kimono studio in Kyoto, the traditional Japanese and Chinese ceramics, especially Song Dynasty’s celadon ware, and the freedom of expression in the American ceramic culture.

“One answer in how to distinguish my carved ceramic surface is the wood firing method. I put no glaze outside, but the natural wood ashes created during wood burning deposit onto my carved surface, which results in beautiful natural effects.”

There will be a reception for the artist on Saturday, April 9 from 1:00 to 4:00 pm. She will also be at the gallery, located at the Allied Arts Guild (75 Arbor Road), on Friday, April 15.

Photo by Gillian Bostock (c) 2012

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