Akio Takamori, American, Equality, 1989, Stoneware, overgaze decoration; 71.1 x 43.2 x 22.9 cm (28 x 17 x 9 inches), Museum purchase with funds from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Helen M. Danforth Acquisition Fund 1989.032
Akio Takamori uses interweaving limbs and bodies to envelope, embrace, and define the shape of this non-functional vessel. Drawing upon craft influences from both Eastern and Western cultures, Takamori explores human relationships and the intimate connections of body and psyche in Equality. Working directly from full-scale drawings of nude bodies, Takamori cut slabs of rolled clay and paired them back-to-back to create an ‘envelope,’ a figural form that Takamori relates to the puppet shows he saw as a child. Fluid calligraphic lines contour each figure and modify the apparent shape and depth of the vessel.