There’s a farewell party, entitled “Have a nice flight!”, for the recently deceased Japanese porn super star Koh Masaki on Tuesday at a Ni Chome club called Aisotope. It’s from 6 pm to midnight, and there’s a 1,000 flower donation entry fee. Here’s the site information in Japanese:
Have a nice flight! 〜真崎航 お別れ会〜 【日時】2013年6月4日（火）18時〜24時【会場】
I love the many inexplicable sights in Tokyo. My neighborhood liquor store set up this strange lunch scene in front of their shop: teddy bear, a plate of spaghetti with fork suspended in the air, a potted flower, and an empty seat as if he’s expecting company. It’s lovely that this “mise-en-scene” has nothing to do with what’s being sold at the store. A pure folly!
Over the Golden Week holiday (May 1 to May 5), I am going with the ceramics senseis and some students to a small town in Shizuoka to make bizen pottery in a wood-fired kiln that will be heated for five days. We will take turns staying up all night to keep the fire lit.
Bizen pottery is very special. It is the oldest form of Japanese pottery, and can only be done in special kilns. Bizen uses no glaze, but instead organic materials like rice straw and pine ash placed on the ceramics produce red and brown markings and spots. The effects are often unpredictable, and they are called “yohen” or kiln accidents.
Here’s two examples of fine bizen: Okayama website, the town that is its original home. And Sachiko Torok’s work, an artist in Bizen.
My first pieces include the four vases above, modeled on the one on the right. My line is still not very good, but I like the trick of turning a round shape into a twisted five-sided shape. I also made four rectangle plates, ten tiny bowls, and five vases that include ceramic lattices for arranging flowers. Two of the lattices are in the shape of steep inverted bowls that sit on top of shallow bowls; three are flat lattices that sit on cylinders and an octagon.
I am curious how they’ll turn out in the oven. We are leaving two weeks from today, and I may make a few more pieces before we go. I’ll post more pictures from the trip and the finished results.
Apparently the bizen town we are going to is super small, and I was warned that there would be no internet. Fortunately one of the students has a nation-wide mobile internet provider for his laptop. I also confirmed with the senseis that while the town is small, they are well stocked with conbinis (convenience stores).
Sorry for the slightly out-of-focus image. Across from our temporary apartment is a single family house with an incredible garden on a corner lot. I am amazed to see a banana with long stemmed yellow flower, and the odd juxtaposition with pine trees, a bamboo fence and some cold-hardy palms.
I helped Otoosan lay down some grass squares in the ceramic studio Shiho’s back garden. I wonder if it will grow. On the other hand, even weeds look fantastic in Tokyo. Below is a daikon radish weed flower next to the shed.