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Hori Ichirō 堀 一郎

Hori Ichirō

Photography by Carol Horvitz

Hori biography pt 1

Born 1952, Mizunami City, Gifu, Japan

HORI ICHIRŌ is known primarily for his dynamic wood-fired vessels and extremely fine, white and gray shino and seto teabowls. He uses long, low-heat firings to allow the clay’s deep-reddish tone to emerge through the thick, creamy glazes. Aside from shino and seto-ware, Hori excels at the difficult ash-glazed kiseto-ware, a pale yellow color applied to a roughly textured surface. In 1984 he built his own anagama kiln in the mountains of Mizunami City, where he continues to experiment with traditional materials and techniques, producing pieces of great complexity and variety. In 1997, he moved his workshop to Ōkusa and established a new compound with both climbing and tunnel kilns. Hori fires his kilns just twice a year, creating forms that emerge after long periods of contemplation.

“Sometimes I think myself a coward, living like a hermit in a mountain village. Other than firing works twice a year, I remain lost in thought. This is not because I am overly preoccupied with designing each piece but rather, because I need extra time to reflect in order to allow each piece to emerge naturally. Nature is my reality.”


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