Saturday, December 9th 19:00〜 

Akira Fujimoto (artist) x Aliki van der Kruijs (artist)

Moderator: Yoriko Ishizawa

(Programme Director, Creative Residency in Arita)



“What is Contemporary Ceramic?

—New expressions elevated from friction between traditional artisan and contemporary art—”

Saturday, January 13th 17:00〜 

Yukio Suzuta (Director, The Kyushu Ceramic Museum) x

Naoko Horiuchi (Curator, Arts Initiative Tokyo [AIT] ) x

Akira Fujimoto (artist)




Akira Fujimoto, Aliki van der Kruijs




4-7-6 Shirakawa, Koto-ku, Tokyo 135-0021 JAPAN

tel +81 3 5843 9128 | e-mail gallery@kanakawanishi.com



December 9th  (Saturday), 2017 — February 3rd (Saturday) 2018

12:00~19:00 | Closed on Sun, Mon, National Holidays

* closed during December 23rd, 2017 through January 8th, 2018

* period will be divided into two terms (installation will change from Jan 9th)




akira, aliki, arata, arita

—contemporary arita porcelain—



KANA KAWANISHI GALLERY is pleased to announce the opening of a duo exhibition by Akira Fujimoto and Aliki van der Kruijs, titled akira, aliki, arata, arita —contemporary arita porcelain—, on Saturday, December 9th.


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Akira Fujimoto is renowned for projects that ironically handle social and environmental phenomena beyond human control, such as Sono Aida, an art project utilizing temporal and spatial “gaps” that appear in urban cities to be converted into exhibition sites, or the 2021 project, which allow the public to instantly imagine the state of “after” the Tokyo Olympics while everyone seems to be feverishly enraptured by the fiesta upcoming in 2020, or the NEW RECYCLE® project, where Fujimoto suggests that the recycle mark should continue evolving itself to accommodate to the fluctuating tide and consecutively warn human beings—while an ironical note to be added is that he succeeded in obtaining a trademark for the concept of “renewing the recycling symbol” while the original Universal Recycling Symbol remains as a public domain.


For the ARITA PORCELAIN PROJECT, Fujimoto has been collaborating with ARITA PORCELAIN LAB, a historic yet innovative kiln in the traditional Arita porcelain field, since 2014 and now over three years. Fujimoto sincerely engages himself in bringing a new life to the deadstocks he finds in the kiln’s storage, which have been drifted aside from the stream  of commercial distribution and have lost their destinations, by the method of freeing them from traditional taboos and restrictions.


Laminations  series

2015, arita porcelain

© Akira Fujimoto, courtesy KANA KAWANISHI GALLERY


Cancel  series

2015, arita porcelain

© Akira Fujimoto, courtesy KANA KAWANISHI GALLERY


For example, the Laminations series is a result of dynamically breaking the conservative rules. The in-glaze pattern sheets, invented for the sake of actualizing efficient mass production of Arita porcelain, had always been delicately transferred by the craftsmen to replicate the flamboyant hand-drawings onto the surfaces of the porcelain. However, Fujimoto succeeded in creating a brand new expression by “overlayering” these pattern sheets over and over each other, which was a process that the craftsmen had never literally thought of throughout their careers over decades. Or in his Cancel series, Fujimoto applies a dynamic geometric pattern with platinum, on top of the gorgeous hand-drawings applied on the large-sized plates and vases of Arita, ironically resulting in disclosing brilliant new values by cancelling the original drawings. Furthermore in one his latest Osmosis series, Fujimoto applies gosu, the cobalt blue underglaze used in Arita porcelain after the object has been applied the transparent glaze and burnt in high temperature (honyaki procedure), while usually it is applied before this as underglaze, and resulting in another unseen expression of Arita. Another series from his latest works are the Conservation series, which he sees the objects purely without their function, eventuating in a pristine object never seen in the 400 years history in Arita.



Concervation  series

2017, arita porcelain

© Akira Fujimoto, courtesy KANA KAWANISHI GALLERY


Osmosis_Full of Tears series

2017, arita porcelain

© Akira Fujimoto, courtesy KANA KAWANISHI GALLERY


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Aliki van der Kruijs graduated ArtEZ University of Visual Arts, Arnhem with a Bachelor's Degree in Fashion in 2007, and Sandberg Instituut, Amsterdam, with an M.A.A. in 2011. Her works visualize unseen forms found in “materials” and “the nature” within themselves, exemplified in mediums such as textile and photography, which works have been exhibited around the globe, including Amsterdam, New York, Milan, Shanghai, Beijing, Tokyo and more others. Since September 2017, Aliki has been invited by Creative Residency in Arita, organized by Saga Prefecture and made possible by Creative Industries Fund NL, and has been researching in Arita, Saga for over three months. This exhibition will introduce her various new expressions found during her residency, combined and introduced as several chapters consisting her “Album Arita” in the scope of renewing the history of Arita porcelain that has been continuing now over 400 years.




In her Whirls series, Aliki applies gosu with an airbrush while circulating the plate, resulting in a new expression in which could also be referred as a new interpretation of the Kumihimo-mon of Nabeshima-yaki. In her Marbling series, she applies underglaze pigment on a coated paper with a brush, and then pours drips of transparent cleansing liquid on top, allowing natural physical reactions to create unseen patterns, which would be transferred on the surfaces of the porcelain. In her Made By Rain series in which she had previously exhibited in textile and photography since 2013, she succeeds combining the method with Arita porcelain by stabilizing patterns created by capturing natural raindrops falling from the sky on the glaze—merging the nature and traditions found in Arita.



Furthermore, her Disappearing Mountain series is inspired from the shocking landscape of an entire mountain that had disappeared as a result of humans drilling and scoping. The artist picked up some stones consisted of the clay of Arita, and applied underglaze by transferring a pattern of an old kimono she found in a second-hand retail in Arita, to simply and strongly exemplifying the startling abysmal nature of humans that had eaten up a whole mountain. On the other hand, her Overglaze series is inspired from red overglaze in which is commonly applied on magnificent typical Arita porcelain. During her everyday commute to and from her home and kiln, she found natural landscapes that seemed as though overglazed with the color red. These landscapes will be presented in the exhibition as a photographic medium, which is a method the artist had been focusing on since the early stages of her artistic career, and invite viewers to see Arita porcelain with a new perspective.





Overglaze series

2017,  archival pigment print on hahnemuhle paper

© Aliki van der Kruijs, courtesy KANA KAWANISHI GALLERY


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Akira Fujimoto, and Aliki van der Kruijs; both artists have been fully immersing themselves in exploring new expressions in Arita, thoroughly taking advantage of their unique cultural backgrounds and perspectives. This exhibition will be consisted of two periods, first and second, and will change its installation during the period. We truly hope this exhibition will bring new inspirations and multiple interpretations in its context.





■Akira Fujimoto

Born 1975 in Tokyo, currently lives and works in Tokyo. Fujimoto graduated Tokyo University of the Arts, Department of Design, studied at Communication Research Center FABRICA (Italy) in 1999, and completed his master’s degree at Tokyo University of the Arts, Department of Design. After working as assistant faculty at Intermedia Art, Tokyo University of the Arts, he has been organizing and curating various exhibitions and projects that query phenomena out of human control, occurring in our societies and environments. Fujimoto’s works are actualized with diverse materials with a combination of digital regulations. Selected solo exhibitions include HEY DAY NOW (Courtyard HIROO Gallery, curated by KANA KAWANISHI GALLERY, 2015), ENERGY TRANSLATION NOW (UltraSuperNew Gallery, curated by KANA KAWANISHI ART OFFICE, 2014),  PEAK OIL (CAPSULE Gallery, 2014) and others. Selected group exhibitions include  Socially Engaged Art: A New Wave of Art for Social Change (Arts Chiyoda 3331, Tokyo, 2017), Kono toshi de mega samete (Awakening in This City) (HIGURE 17-15 cas, Tokyo, 2016). Fujimoto is the organizer of SONO AIDA, an art project which utilizes temporal and spatial “gaps” that appear in urban cities.

Photo by Lonneke van der Palen


■Aliki van der Kruijs

Born 1984 in Deaurne, currently lives and works in The Hague. Aliki graduated from ArtEZ University of Visual Arts, Arnhem with a Bachelor’s Degree in Fashion in 2007, and Sandberg Instituut, Amsterdam, with a Master’s Degree in Applied Art in 2011. Her works visualize forms found in “materials” and the “nature” within themselves, and are exemplified with media such as textile and photography, which have been exhibited in cities around the globe. Her works have been exhibited in venues including Het Nieuwe Instituut (Rotterdam, 2017), Zuiderzee Museum (Enkhuizen, 2017), OCT Contemporary Art Terminal (Shanghai, 2015), Boijmans Van Beuningen (Rotterdam, 2014) and many others. Aliki was invited by Creative Residency In Arita, organized by Saga Prefecture and made possible by Creative Industries Fund NL, and has been researching in Arita, Saga, since September 2017.