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Also open before Castle Theater shows & during intermission.
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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.


Juror Information Announced Application

Receiving Dates for Entries
• Hawai‘i Island - Aug 30
• Oah‘u - Sept 6
• Kaua‘i - Sept 13
• Maui - Sept 20

Call to Hawai’i Artists: Maui Arts & Cultural Center will soon begin the jurying process for its signature Schaefer Portrait Challenge 2015. This statewide juried triennial art exhibition, scheduled for public view in January 2015, will feature artists whose work best captures Hawai‘i’s extraordinary portrait subjects.

Portrait Entry Dates - coming up!

Hawai‘i Island – August 30, 2014 - Wailoa Arts & Cultural Center, 200 Piopio Street, Hilo • Receiving: Saturday, August 30, 9 am - noon. Pick up: Sunday, August 31, 9 am – 11 am

Oah‘u – September 6, 2014 - Honolulu Museum of Art School, 1111 Victoria Street, Honolulu • Receiving: Saturday, September 6, 9 am - noon. Pick up: Sunday, September 7, 9 am - noon

Kaua‘i – September 13, 2014 - Kaua‘i Community College (welding classroom) 3-901 Kaumuali‘i Highway, Lihu‘e • Receiving: Saturday, September 13, 9 am - noon. Pick up: Sunday, September 14, 9 am - noon

Maui – September 20, 2014 - Maui Arts & Cultural Center ( Alexa Higashi Room) • Receiving: Saturday, September 20, 9 am - noon. Pick up: Monday, September 22, 9 am – noon

SPC 2015 jurors are Esther Shimizu, Keith Tallett and Sidney Yee. (see their information below) The jurors will look for portraits that communicate both visually and conceptually. Beyond technical proficiency, the artist must reveal their subject’s inner spirit or essence, and convey that essence to the viewer. Jurying for SPC 2015 will consist of two rounds. A preliminary jurying will take place on four islands: O‘ahu, Kaua‘i, Hawai‘i Island and Maui; the jurors travel to each island to review submissions. Semifinalists will be selected at each location based on direct observation of the work by the jury. Final jurying will take place on Maui, based on review of digital images of the semifinalists’ work from all four jury locations.

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.

Artists interested in participating in SPC 2015 are encouraged to view and print the “Call to Artists” prospectus and application Click here for a pdf.
Printed copies are available. Contact Neida Bangerter, Gallery Director, 808-243-4288

About the Jurors for Schaefer Portrait Challenge 2015


Esther Shimazu is the granddaughter of Japanese immigrant laborers, and was born and raised in suburban Honolulu. She attended public schools and the University of Hawai‘i at Minoa before transferring to the University of Massachusetts, Amherst to obtain her degrees as Bachelor of Fine Art (BFA) degree in 1980, and Master of Fine Art (MFA) in 1982. In her work, she brings together a lifelong love of clay and the figure, using traditional vessel-making techniques in stoneware sculpture. Each piece is bisque-fired, hand-sanded, and highly detailed with slips and a final airbrushing of oxides. Most of the imagery is of bare chunky Asian women, unconcerned about clothing and comfortable in their own skins.

“I want emotional connection that they know and 'get' their subject. Technical proficiency is always appreciated as is wow factor, whether it is in the execution or the portrayal.“

Keith Tallett is a mixed media artist whose work engages painting, drawing, sculpture, photography and installation. Born on Hawai‘i Island, Keith is also a second generation surfboard shaper and tattoo practitioner of traditional Polynesian patterns. The process of making art for him becomes a way of creating dialogue between his cultural knowledge and practices. Keith has an MFA from the San Francisco Art Institute and a BA from the University of Hawai‘i at Hilo, where he was a lecturer for the art department from 2004 to 2011.He is the recipient of the Jean Charlot Foundation Award for Excellence, and the Cultural Apprenticeship Grant through the Folk Art Program at Hawai‘i State Foundation on Culture and the Arts (2011) and the Joan Mitchell Foundation Sculptor and Painter Grant (2013).

“I feel that technical proficiency is important, however that's not as high on my list as seeing a strong concept behind the work and in the materials used. Personally, I would like to see entries that utilize non-traditional media and techniques....new twists on the idea of a portrait. ”

Sidney Yee lives on Maui and grew up in Waipahu. His earlier work as a ceramist explored large altered asymmetrical forms with raku-fired finish. He later took a sabbatical to study painting, developing deeper conceptual associations and the influence of heritage and cultural values. Sidney holds a degree as Master in secondary school education from the University of Hawai‘i, and was a high school art teacher for over 25 years. Awards include a Fellowship Grant for Teachers of Art from the John F. Kennedy Center in Washington D.C., and several Art in Public Places projects from the Hawai‘i State Foundation on Culture and the Arts, including the prominent ceramic murals at the Maui International Airport.

“It is my hope to select artists who have captured the persona, the core, the essence of their subjects through whatever means, while using innovation and a fresh approach to a classical art form.”

Modern Twist: Bamboo Art
October 12 - December 20
Schaefer International Gallery, Tuesday - Sunday, 10am - 5 pm FREE Admission!



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