Interview: Kazuo Morita
Luca Curci talks with Kazuo Morita during FRAGMENTED IDENTITIES, second appointment of BORDERS Art Fair 2020, at THE ROOM Contemporary Art Space.
“I have great respect for the simple design of pots, bowls, and dishes. These designs have not changed significantly for hundreds of years, and beyond their historical value, they are objects we use daily without playing special attention to them. I take the shapes of traditional pottery and decorate them. My ideas are generated by nature, in particular marine life, personal experiences and the influence of society on some once personal wellbeing. I majored in oceanography at a Kyoto Seika University in Japan. I’m especially interested in deep sea life, its mysteries and surprises. Undiscovered things, the element of water, ocean species and their habits and movements influence this work. Unusual inspiring shapes and colors and their effortless exchange with gravity are elements that engage with traditional pottery shapes and push and pull it to new directions”.
Luca Curci – What’s your background?
Kazuo Morita – I majored in oceanography at a Japanese university. After I graduated from university, I worked in sales for three years.
LC – What is the experience that has influenced your work the most?
KM – The most influential experiences were studying oceanography at university, suffering from depression and bullying. I am grateful that I was able to create my current work style because of these experiences.
LC – Which subject are you working on?
KM – I choose to work with ceramic because it represents both the past and the future. My goal is to create a juxtaposition of functional historic objects taken over by abstract forms based on my experience. I present a tension between functionality and Artistry.
LC – How is being an artist nowadays?
KM – The boundaries of all arts are being removed, and I think there are many artists who are presenting works that transcend barriers.
LC – What is your creative process like?
KM – First, make a pot or plate with the potter’s wheel, and decorate the design that is solidified to some extent. However, I always decorate it while thinking about more interesting designs in my head. So the design is constantly changing.
LC – Do visitors’ suggestions enrich yourself and your art?
KM – Of course, the opinions of those who see the work are important, but I leave everything to my intuition.
LC – What do you think about the concept of this festival?
KM – People to people, countries to countries were blocked in the context of the corona pandemic. Because of this situation, the concept of borders is very easy for me to express.
LC – In which way did it inspire you?
KM – In pottery, I got a new idea of how to express the practical design of pots, plates, and bowls as a work of art.
LC – What is the message linked to the artwork you have shown in this exhibition?
KM – It expresses the conflict between people and the natural environment, and the fusion of the sea and the sky.
LC – How is it connected to the theme of the entire festival?
KM – Breaking the boundaries between crafts and contemporary art through my ceramic works.
LC – What is your idea about ITSLIQUID GROUP?
KM – I think it’s a wonderful service where you can see the works of artists from all over the world.
LC – Would you suggest a collaboration with us? What do you think about our services?
KM – I would like to continue if there is something that matches the concept of my work and the exhibition you are hosting. I think many Japanese artists don’t know your service yet. There are many Japanese artists who are interested in exhibiting works in Europe, so I recommend advertising in Japan.
LC – Do you think ITSLIQUID GROUP can represent an opportunity for artists?
KM – I found the opportunity to exhibit works in Europe, which has a deep history of art is a great service for Asian artists.