Thomas Arakawa & Kathy Lee
I was born and raised in Japan, and I came to the United States when I was 19. I spent the half of my life in Japan and another half in the United States. I started making pots in 2009 at Blossom Hill Crafts Pottery in Los Gatos. Although I learned pottery in America, what I make always resembles Japanese culture. To me, the process of making pottery is affirmation of my Japanese heritage and the American influence to me.
I love the process of making pottery. The things exist just as my imagination become tangible objects which add value to people’s everyday life. Almost at all stages of the pottery making process, the creation is measured by human senses. The handmade process measured by the human senses reflects my emotion and passion in the tangible result.
I aspire to make unique functional pottery that reflect myself, fit American life style, and enrich customers everyday life. I would like to keep making handmade pottery so that customers can relate my work to me as person. As I am making pottery I think about how individual customers use my pieces and how it affects their life. This gives me a unique connection with the people who use my pots.
I achieve my goal by making functional pottery as an collaborative work between me and customers. Most of my functional-ware are half complete as art. My ikibana vessel and bonsai pots are complete as art when customer put their plants. My dinnerware are complete as art when customers place their food and used in their everyday life.
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