photo Masahiro Maeda

Masahiro Maeda

Ceramics with overglaze enamels, gold, and silver ‒ Overpowering formative beauty and coloration technique ‒
Ultra modern shapes and pop coloration. Simple and naïve, rich and gorgeous… Fibrous and sinewy checked textures stiffen the substance of a work and harmonize opposing elements. The clearance precision of the lid of mizusashi (fresh-water jar used in the tea ceremony) is so high that it is hard to believe it was fired, and the atmosphere of tension released, only demonstrates the artist’s extraordinary skills. At first sight, the work looks like heavy pottery, but it is intricately calculated porcelain with overglaze enamels, and emits a very sharp and strong presence. A wheel-turned pure white ceramic base is scraped by hand; meticulous masking is manually applied; before firing the workpiece is delicately painted with overglaze enamels. Such painstaking work is actually repeated more than five times before finally the complicated surface effect appears. This is exactly MAEDA Masahiro’s style, his one and only style. The power that lies at the root of creating works that convey his sensitive, yet humorous personality is his passionate commitment to mono (objects). The subjects of his interest and aesthetic appreciation are not confined only to the world of ceramics, but encompass many cultural aspects of East and West. The viewer can feel that his ceramic works are a compilation of all kinds of formative art. He never deliberately strives to be different, and it is amazing that his works have both an everyday practicality and can also be appreciated as artwork ceramics. Currently his studio has been relocated to bustling Roppongi, Tokyo, where he keeps producing stunning works for modern times, and it is certain he will continue to be highly esteemed at home and abroad.


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  • Honors and Affiliation
    Full member, Japan Kogei Association


  • 1948
    Born in Kumihama Town, Kyoto Prefecture
  • 1975
    Completed Ceramics Course, Department of Crafts,
    Graduate School of Fine Arts, Tokyo University
    of the Arts
  • 1983
    Japanese Ceramics Today – Masterworks from the
    Kikuchi Collection Exhibition (Smithsonian Institution,
    Washington and Victoria and Albert Museum, London)
  • 1991
    Pioneering the Next Generation:Building the New
    Tea Exhibition, Nihonbashi Mitsukoshi Department Store
  • 1992
    100 Selections of Contemporary Japanese Ceramics
    Exhibition, Nihonbashi Mitsukoshi Department Store
  • 1994
    ""Adventures of the Hand"" Exhibition, the Miyagi
    Museum of Art, Miyagi Prefecture
  • 1996
    Masterpieces of Contemporary Japanese Ceramics
    Asia Touring Exhibition (Japan Foundation)
  • 1997
    Judge, Japanese Traditional Art Crafts New Works
    Exhibition (also in 2000, 01, 06, 07, 10)
  • 2000
    Maeda Masahiro Exhibition (Daishinen Art Museum,
    Takahagi, Ibaraki Prefecture)
  • 2002
    Judge, Japan Traditional Art Crafts Exhibition
    (also in 2010)
    The Ceramics of Kanagawa - The Beauty of Vessels
    (Kanagawa Prefectural Gallery)
    100 Years of Contemporary Ceramics Exhibition
    (Museum of Modern Ceramic Art, Gifu)
  • 2003
    Japanese Ceramics Today, Musee Tomo
  • 2005
    Relocated his studio to Roppongi, Tokyo.
    Held Roppongi Ceramics Club
  • 2006
    Cool & Sophisticated:Contemporary Master
    Ceramists of Eastern Japan, Ibaraki Ceramic Art Museum
  • 2007
    Maeda Masahiro Iro-e Ceramics Exhibition,
    Asahi Beer Oyamazaki Villa Museum of Art
  • 2009
    Aka, Kuro, Kin, Gin, Midori, Ao - In Praise of
    Colors Maeda Masahiro Exhibition (Musee Tomo)
  • 2013
    Colourful x Monochrome - Maeda Masahiro x
    Japanese-style Painting Exhibition
    (Yoshizawa Memorial Museum of Art, Sano)
    8th Paramita Ceramic Art Grand Prize Exhibition (Paramita Museum)


  • 1988
    Received the Japan Kogei Association Incentive
    Award at the Japan Traditional Art Crafts Exhibition
  • 1998
    Received the Incentive Award at the 38th Japanese
    Traditional Art Crafts New Works Exhibition
  • 2005
    Received the Excellence Award at the
    Kikuchi Biennale
  • 2008
    Received the Excellence Award at the 2nd Musee
    Tomo Prize, Contemporary Ceramics for the Tea
    Ceremony Exhibition
  • 2009
    Received the President of Japan Art Crafts
    Association Prize at the Japan Traditional Art Crafts
  • 2010
    Received the MOA Museum of Art Award at the 17th
    MOA Mokichi Okada Awards Exhibition
  • 2011
    Received the Japan Ceramics Society
    President's Award