It's Like Poetry: Building a Toshiko Takaezu Archive at RAM

August 2, 2019 - July 26, 2020

RAM’s archive now numbers over 30 works, including Toshiko Takaezu’s (1922-2011) most expansive grouping, the installation comprised of 14 “human-sized” forms, the Star Series. Significantly, the museum’s holdings span the range of Takaezu’s working career—with a double-spouted pot from the 1950s being the earliest and the Star Series (1999-2000) being the latest. There are also drawings and prints—works with forms that echo the shapes of Takaezu’s three-dimensional pieces while also reflecting her sensitivity to shape and color. This exhibition features small bowls, toasting goblets, platters, two-foot high closed pieces, and large spheres created over several decades of the artist’s career, which is on view in the unique, street-facing gallery space.

While unassuming in her disposition, Takaezu was a bona fide ceramic superstar. She created work—paintings, prints, fiber, and cast bronze in addition to her well-known ceramic pieces of varying sizes—that embodied a poetic balance between art and life. RAM has been acquiring a range of pieces by Takaezu—from individual forms to multi-part installations—and establishing an archive that documents this significant artist who pushed the boundaries of clay in the late twentieth century. 

Takaezu was inspired by nature and the environment, noting the early influence of her home state, Hawaii. She combined this with an interest in color and surface—her signature Makaha blue (a rich blue) being one of many tones she used. She was an artist in tune with concepts of balance and harmony—interior/exterior, planning/unpredictability, calm/tense, large/small.

MORE ABOUT THE EXHIBITION
Exhibition Gallery Guide
Press Room

EXHIBITION EVENTS
Free Behind-the-Scenes Tour with
RAM Executive Director and Curator of Collections Bruce W. Pepich

Friday, September 6 | 7:00 pm




Exhibition Display Photography by Nicholas Newcomb and Tom Grotta
Images Courtesy of Nicholas Newcomb Pottery & Sculpture, Brooklyn New York and browngrotta arts, Wilton, Connecticut

Paul Smith
Toshiko Takaezu (1922 – 2011) in Her Studio
Quakerstown, NJ
, ca. 1985, printed 2016

Archival digital inkjet print
Racine Art Museum, Gift of the Artist
Photography by the Artist

Toshiko Takaezu
Moon, ca. 1985

Glazed stoneware
20 x 21 3/4 inches diameter
Racine Art Museum, Gift of the Artist
Photography by Jon Bolton, Racine

Toshiko Takaezu
Moon Pot, 1976

Glazed stoneware
7 x 6 inches diameter
Racine Art Museum, Gift of Karen Johnson Boyd
Photography by Jon Bolton, Racine

Toshiko Takaezu
Purple Closed Form, 2005

Glazed stoneware
18 1/4 x 13 1/2 inches diameter
Racine Art Museum, Promised Gift of Johnson Bank, Trustee of the
QTIP Trust for Bill Boyd u/a Karen Johnson Boyd 1996 Trust
Photography by Jon Bolton, Racine

Toshiko Takaezu
Tall Closed Form, ca. 2000

Glazed stoneware
21 x 16 1/2 inches diameter
Racine Art Museum, Promised Gift of Johnson Bank, Trustee of the 
QTIP Trust for Bill Boyd u/a Karen Johnson Boyd 1996 Trust
Photography by Jon Bolton, Racine



 

It's Like Poetry: Building a Toshiko Takaezu Archive at RAM is made possible by:

Platinum Sponsors
Anonymous

Windgate Foundation

Diamond Sponsors
David Charak
Osborne and Scekic Family Foundation
Ruffo Family Foundation, Inc.

Gold Sponsors
Silver Sponsors
A. C. Buhler Family
Evinrude Outboard Motors
Lucy G. Feller
Dorothy MacVicar
Bronze Sponsors
John Cram and Matt Chambers
Barbara Delaney
David and Ellen Easley
Andrea and Tony Hauser
Fredrick and Deborah Ganaway
William A. Guenther
Kirsten and Emily Maki Foundation
The Norbell Foundation
Charles H. Patton and Family in Memory of Joan S. Patton

  

Janna and Dr. Edward Waldeck
Bill and Mary Walker
Media Sponsors