CRAFT CUBED: KYOKO IMAZU

Guest Artist in Residence, ceramicist Kyoko Imazu, is showcasing her work alongside Tommy Hluchanic, Colin Gallagher, Dawn Tang, Vanessa Lucas and Courtney King at this year's Northcote Pottery Open Day taking place 10am - 3pm,  Saturday August 19. This Open Day is always a bumper event offering behind the scenes insights into contemporary ceramics as well as loads of fun 'hands on' activities, demonstrations and a makers market. We asked Kyoko a few questions about her earliest Craft memories, where she goes for inspiration and some of the events she's most looking forward at this years Craft Cubed Festival. 

What’s the significance of the handmade to you?

The significance is the fact that it's one of a kind unique object in the world!
I think beautifully handcrafted handmade work - be it ceramic, jewellery, prints or sculptures - starts to have a soul after the creation. And when it meets the right owner it just brings sparks and chill in the spine to the person. It's quite rare but it just happened to me today at Northcote Pottery Supplies. I saw a pot made by Yoko Ozawa. It was like meeting a long lost friend. Such a strange feeling but I JUST HAD TO GET IT! 
I'm also a printmaker by trade and I make editions of hand-printed etchings. Even though each print is meant to be the same image and same tone etc, it is handmade, printed each by hand. Each print is the one and only work of art.

What is your earliest craft memory?

Collecting feathers in the playground in kindergarten and pasting them on papers to create an image of one big bird. And also drawing rabbits for my mum.

What is your philosophy or motto when it comes to creativity?

Go to the studio and do something - anything, everyday. It could just be doodling, reading, looking at old works, daydreaming or watering plants... To me it's about creating a habit of being in the creative space.

Where do you go in Melbourne for inspiration?

I usually sit in my studio and browse my old sketchbooks or books for any creative sparks. I try to go to Museum too and draw specimens there - it's the best satisfying feeling. 
Or go to friends' studio for chat - my dear friends printmaker/textile artist Ema Shin and jeweller Abby Seymour always fill me with lots of love and creative energy whenever I go to their studios.

What are you reading OR listening to at the moment?

I'm reading Animal series books published by Reaktion Books on rabbits and hare. These books explore the historical significance of animals from the perspectives of mythology, art, history, science, products, food, imagination etc. I'm borrowing them from retail manager Sarah Knight in Northcote Pottery Supplies. She also has a soft spot for rabbits like I do.

How would you describe your studio or making environment?

Organised mess (Some disagree) with lots of small pieces of papers. Only I know where things are...

How does good craft make you feel?

Brings sparkles in my head. Eyes wide open and heart thumping from excitement

What other Craft Cubed events are you excited about?

I love handmade small precious objects so I'm so excited about many jewellery exhibitions like the ones hosted by E.G.ETAL. All ceramic open days happen on the same day on 19th August - I wish I could go to all of them!

FULL EVENT LISTING: NORTHCOTE POTTERY OPEN DAY