Hiroe Hanazono

Hanazono condiment set

Condiment Set   2015
Slip cast porcelain, each small dish approximately 2” x 4” x 3.5″

“I love food. It’s fair to say I’m obsessed with food, and this began in my youth. In Japan, a good meal must satisfy the eyes as well as the taste buds. We expect not only good flavors, but also visual beauty.

Food is about more than sustenance. In Japan, we have festivals and occasions where food is offered in family altars and shrines, or where we eat special meals tied to specific events. Food is even used as decorations in the house. This attention to all aspects of food deeply informs my work.

I started learning ceramics soon after moving to California. Given my love of food, I naturally gravitated to functional pots. Pots and food share the same steps of manipulating raw materials into a final product. They enrich one another when brought together with purpose in a meal. It also allowed me to create a physical vocabulary to contrast the American presentation of an entire meal on a single dish with the Japanese highlighting elements of a meal on individual dishes.

My personal style has been influenced by modern interior design and architecture. I’m especially fascinated by design rooted in Japanese and Scandinavian minimalism. This can be almost severe in its simplicity. As a result it doesn’t compete with anything that comes into its space.

In pottery making, the vessel for the food must enhance the presentation of the food that it contains. I believe that minimalist design helps focus on the food in all its colors and textures.

My work constantly evolves. Even as I innovate new techniques in slipcasting, I return to the well of my upbringing in Japan, the appreciation and celebration of food in the entirety of its experience. I hope these pieces provide inspiration to go home and craft a meal where each element is celebrated and yet creates a cohesive, delicious and beautiful whole.”

私は食に関するすべてのものが大好きです。それはむしろ食に執着していると言っても過言ではありません。この執着心は日本で生まれ育った私の青春時代に始まりました。日本では良い食事は 味覚だけでなく 視覚も満足させなければなりません。料理の味が良いのは当然のことで、その料理の美しさも問われます。

私の食に関するする情熱をかんがえると陶芸を始めてから 食器作りにのめり込んで行ったのは自然の事のように思います。陶芸と料理は根本が同じです。何を作るか自分でプランを立ててから 材料や食材をいろいろな技法で器や料理に仕上げていきます。そしてその器と料理の両方がひとつになったとき、はじめて素晴らしい食事の意味が見出せるのではないかと思います。日本とは対照的に普段アメリカではよく一つのお皿に全ての料理を盛り付けて食事をします。日本では個々の料理はそれに伴った器にそれぞれ盛り付けられます。私はこれからも日本で培った食の素晴らしさを自分でデザインした一つ一つの器を通してアメリカで伝えていけたらと願います。

– Hiroe Hanazono

Hanazono, bio