The Japanese term Kögei refers to a type of craft work performed by highly trained Japanese artisans. These objects cannot be described merely as as craft items, because they are superior in finish and precision, but neither can they be categorised simply as works of art. They are exquisite handmade pieces that represent the finest pottery, textile, lacquer and wood work.
Part of the mystique of these objects is the belief among the Japanese that the great spirits of their culture are also present in their artistic creations. According to the tradition, the exceptional nature of Kögei pieces means that they are favoured by the gods.
These exclusive objects will be on show in the Japanese Kögei/Future Forward exhibition at New York’s Museum of Arts and Design (MAD) from late October to 7 February 2016. The exhibition will showcase the best work from 12 of these artists, aiming to examine the evolution of this traditional discipline in today’s culture.
Photos: Suemasa Mareo/Saiki Taku/Hatakeyama Takashi/Watanabe Osamu/Yamamura Shinya. www.madmuseum.org
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