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Soaring Voices: Recent Ceramics by Women from Japan
October 21 - January 6
Opening Reception on Saturday, October 20

Etsuko Tashima, Cornucopia 04-Y’IV, 2004, Stoneware and glass (left)
Yasuko Sakurai, White Flower, 2000, Porcelain (right)

This international traveling museum exhibition presents the rich and innovative ceramic culture of Japan through the exquisite works of 25 female artists. Four generations of award-winning artists, working in both sculptural and traditional forms, demonstrate the superb creativity of women in a field generally governed by men.

Participating Artists

  • Ikuko Ando
  • Masuko Emi
  • Sachiko Fujino
  • Fuku Fukumoto
  • Kakun Hayashi
  • Kyoko Hori
  • Nanako Kaji
  • Chieko Katsumata
  • Eiko Kishi
  • Junko Kitamura
  • Shoko Koike
  • Kiyoko Koyama
  • Atsuko Kubota
  • Yuriko Matsuda
  • Kimiyo Mishima
  • Yuki Nakaigawa
  • Yasuko Sakurai
  • Mariko Shibata
  • Ayumi Shigematsu
  • Sachiko Shimizu
  • Etsuko Tashima
  • Kyoko Tokumaru
  • Asuka Tsuboi

We honor these pioneering women who have passed on:

  • Takako Araki
  • Kyo Tsuji

Mahalo to Co-curators

  • Hiroko Miura
  • Maya Nishi

Discover works that demonstrate a range of methods, materials and motifs, many inspired from the natural world, ancient literature and Noh traditions, and some charming ceramic surprises. The curators hope that these eloquent works of Japan’s outstanding women artists will move viewers with a Japanese beauty and serenity whose existence seems to have been forgotten in this age of technology and globalization.

Soaring Voices was developed by The Shigaraki Ceramic Cultural Park, Shiga Prefecture, and hus-10, Inc., Tokyo, Japan and organized for tour by International Arts & Artists,Washington, DC. It is supported in part by the S&R Foundation, Hawai‘i Tourism Authority, County of Maui - Office of Economic Development, The Fairmont Kea Lani, Old Lāhaina Lū‘au and SpeediShuttle with additional support from University of Hawai‘i Maui College.

Soaring Voices is accompanied by an exhibition catalogue produced by the Museum of Contemporary Ceramic Art at the Shigaraki Ceramic Cultural Park, Shiga Prefecture, Japan. It features full-color photographs of the ceramics and individual essays by the artists who tell their own stories and explain their diverse techniques, mediums and influences.. The catalogue also includes a substantial essay section written by Louise Cort of the Smithsonian’s Arthur M. Sackler Gallery and other highly recognized curators who explain the evolution of women’s roles in ceramic making in Japan and why an exhibition of this nature takes place at this time.


The exhibit features the work of artists from the islands of O‘ahu, Maui, Kaua‘i and Hawai‘i, and portrait subjects who live and work in Hawaii and have a significant connection to the artist. The 2015 Challenge includes 66 works from 64 individual artists.

Artists participating in the 2015 Schaefer Portrait Challenge :
Rose Adare, Taryn Alessandro, Ilana Moidel Alevedo, Anita Bisquera, Nitya Brighenti, Tobias Brill, Allyn Bromley, Heather Burton, Chris Campbell, Mike Carroll, Christine Chouinard, Jacqueline Moore Chun Peter Shepard Cole, Ingrid Frégeau, Sally French, Lynne Garzino, Roberta Griffith, Snowden Hodges, Dennis Holzer, Kathleen Kastles, Verdine Kong, Kirk Kurokawa, Paul M. Lacio, Chenta Laury, Gini Lawson, Max Lemaire, Lynn Weiler Liverton, Robert Lober, Jody M. Lovins, Deb Lynch, Charlie Lyon, Mark Maresca, Pat Masumoto, Albert Maticheu, Richard T. Maxwell, William Patrick McKnight, Casey McLain, Jacob Arthur Medina, Mark Feijao Milligan II, Gerald Murai, Mydock, Penny Nichols, Joseph Okonek, Darrell W. Orwig, Colin Ota, Valentino Quijano, Noble Richardson, Hans Riecke, Robena, Karin Rohr, Amanda Carey Scott, Roger B. Stephens, Jean Stromberg, Robert Suzuki, Jimmy Tablante, Barbara Tacyshyn-Roth, Michael Takemoto, David William Terry, Tom Z. G. Tong, Christine Turnbull, Albert Weight, Atsumi Yamamoto, Paul F. Yount, William D. Zwick

Jurors for the 2015 Challenge: Esther Shimazu (O‘ahu), Keith Tallett (Hawai‘i Island), and Sidney Yee (Maui).

Schaefer Portrait Challenge is open to artists 18 years of age and older who are residents of the state of Hawai‘i. All works entered must be original one-of-a- kind and newly-created specifically for this exhibition. Selected portraits in the Schaefer Portrait Challenge 2015 will be on exhibit at Maui Arts & Cultural Center, Schaefer International Gallery, January 13 – March 22, 2015. Now in its fifth round, this popular exhibit has captivated crowds since the first signature exhibition in 2003. The exhibit features two prestigious awards: the $15,000 Jurors’ Choice Award and the $5,000 Marian Freeman People’s Choice Award.

With their portraits, artists must submit a statement about themselves and their subject. All portraits must have been created during the 12-month period prior to the entry deadline, and not previously exhibited. Two-dimensional media accepted includes oil, acrylic, pastel, watercolor and mixed media. Accepted sculptures include work in bronze, ceramic, plaster, wood and mixed media.

Schaefer Portrait Challenge
January 13 - March 22
Opening Reception January 11



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We present visual arts from the State of Hawaii and around the world to reflect important issues and ideas of our time. Our primary goal is to support artists in their exploration of new and innovative work...



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