All that I have ever seen that the man potted was a dream: little is documented about his painting life, and not many of his works survive. Fascinating. He was little known in Japan, he was poor and unaccepted by Soetsu Yanagi. A story in and of itself.
Dai Ichi Arts is delighted to present the first ever solo exhibition of the works of Mingei artist Murata Gen in North America. The show will explore the plethora of vessels & functional forms Murata created, with an emphasis on his sensitivity for painted clay surfaces. “The Heart’s Eye: In Search of Murata Gen” illustrates an affectual and emotional side of Mingei craft expression through the works of Murata Gen alongside the works of his contemporaries (Shimaoka Tatsuzo, Hamada Shoji, Kawai Kanjiro, and Matsuzaki Ken) in modern & contemporary Japan.
Murata Gen has been a favorite of Mingei collectors for decades, but his works have never received the recognition they deserve. Considered as the underdog of the Mingei folk-craft canon in the world of Japanese ceramics, Murata Gen’s works are underestimated, influential, and remarkable, all foregrounded by his training in classical painting. This exhibition aims to canonize him as an important part of Mashiko, Mingei, and Japanese folk-craft modern history.