Mineo Mizuno

Mineo MizunoArtist’s Statement

Challenge is the first word that comes to mind when asked about my work. I have spent most of my 40-year career challenging the conventions of the ceramic arts. I always seem to ask more of the material whether in size or in surface treatment or in the chemistry of the glaze itself. I also ask the materials to exist on equal footing with painting and sculpture.

My most personally satisfying shape to date is the water drop that has recurred in my work in various sizes and adaptations since about 2000. The large oval or round mounds with a hole excavated in the center are entirely painted with a Japanese character repeated uncountable times, the sign that means ” Zero” or the sign meaning “silence.” Some are glazed with luminous skin of graphite, dark mysterious and organic. Somewhere in the background of my mind there rests symbolism. Think tea ceremony, water and cleansing in a spiritual sense.

Now, the importance of landscape in my heritage has surfaced. I am crossing a new boundary: integrating horticulture and ceramics. The new pieces are large fired mounds, developed from the water drop shape, with tiny holes in the surface. I plant tiny bits of moss that I collect on my early morning bicycle rides. I have created a contraption, which sprays a mist so that bright emerald tufts emerge and slowly cover the ceramic mound creating a miniature landscape. I am still experimenting with these ideas. I want to keep challenging the traditional concepts of ceramic art.

Website: mineomizuno.com


Select Solo Exhibitions

Coexistence, Samuel Freeman Gallery, Santa Monica, Calif.

Tear Drop, Patricia Faure Gallery, Santa Monica, Calif.

Water Drops, Patricia Faure Gallery, Santa Monica, Calif.
Crossing Boundaries: The Ceramic Sculpture of Mineo Mizuno, Long Beach Museum of Art, Long Beach, Calif. (catalog)

Zero Series, LMAN Gallery, Los Angeles
Group Exhibitions

Within Two Hands: The Eye of the collector, San Francisco Museum of Craft + Design, San Francisco

Looking Ahead, LMAN Gallery, Los Angeles

Chouinard: A Living Legacy, Oceanside Museum of Art, Oceanside, Calif.

Color and Fire: Defining Moments in Studio Ceramic, 1950-2000, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Los Angeles


National Endowment for the Arts fellowship