"The ceramic figures of Fujiwara come to life as soon as the kiln door is opened."
Ayato Fujiwara creates ceramic statues using sculptural as well as ceramic techniques. Inspired by the structure of Utsuwa (vessel) itself, Fujiwara explores conflicting ideas such as the inner/outer surface of human beings and the light/shadow of form, the positive and negative which complete the whole, while creating characters with vague expressions and an ambiguous gaze, which form the symbol of Japanese people today.
Fujiwara's sculptures standing directly on the floor attract people with their eerie reality. Their intricate surfaces sculpted by hand, emanating both a coldness and warmth, provoke an irresistible desire to touch the works, leading one to a confused standpoint between user (of ceramics) and viewer (of art works), creating an exceptionally intimate personal space in which one may engage with them. This is special characteristic of Fujiwara's works, and his works' tactile quality is unique and invites the viewers to question the distance between them and artworks.
Having spent time working in London, he has also developed the notion of identity as a Japanese artist. Born and raised in Mashiko city, famous for its pottery, Mashiko-yaki, growing up with a close familiarity with ceramics, he found the necessity to pursue a practice which crosses the border between sculpture and ceramics, simultaneously pointing towards the universal expression of humanity and the expressions of people in contemporary Japan. Fujiwara takes these different elements and allows them to bounce off each other, to create a deeper form of sculptural art work. Furthermore in his relief works, he not only deals with the idea of universal humanity, but also engages in more conceptual explorations. In the works of Fujiwara we may find a unique expression of both the universal and the modern day.
This exhibition will present Fujiwara's recent full-length statues, busts, ceramic reliefs and drawing sculptures and it is here that we find the universal but contemporary theme of "people who are here, but not quite here".
Born 1975, brought up in Tochigi Prefecture
2001 B.F.A. in Sculpture, Tokyo University of the Arts
2003 M.F.A. in Sculpture, Tokyo University of the Arts
2007/9-2008/9 Awarded scholarship to pursue artistic research in London by the Agency of Cultural Affairs, Trained at the Victoria and Albert Museum
Currently Part-time Lecturer, Tokyo University of the Arts
Member of Japan Artists Association, Inc.
Manager of Aplus Art Organization
* Selected Solo Exhibitions
2009 "Viewpoints of New Generation 09" gallery21yo-j, Tokyo
2007 "Ayato Fujiwara" Gallery 21＋Yo, Tokyo
2006 "Yamikara" KITANAKA WHITE Room No. 118 REI INOUE ART WORKS, Kanagawa
2006 "Filled with the Philosophical Wind" Gallery Eve, Tokyo
2004 "CUT FLOWER" Studio Brick-one, Tokyo
2003 "Ayato Fujiwara- Sculptures" Galleria Chimera, Tokyo
* Selected Group Exhibitions
2010 "A Plus Show Case 01-Espace-" OGUMAG, Tokyo
2010 "Ode to Crows" Jazz Room MARY JANE, Tokyo
2009 "Domani 2009" The National Art Center, Tokyo
2009 "Unilimited" Aplus, Tokyo
2008 "The Power Hidden in Tochigi - Contemporary Ceramics in Tochigi prefecture-" Mashiko Ceramic Museum, Tochigi
2007 "CONTINENT CERAMIQUE "INSITUT EUROPEEN DES ARTS CERAMIQUES , Florival Museum , Alsace
2007 "Asian Young Artist Festival 2007" Heyri University Village, KEUMSAM GALLERY, Korea
2006 "JAPAN FESTIVAL" Heyri Art Village KEUMSAN GALLERY, Korea
2006 "Sukinodelique - Surfaces of Sculptures-" Gallery Tokyo University of the Arts, Tokyo