first heard of Masakazu Kusakabe on the occasion of three of our ceramic
artists (Sevcan Cerkez, Toya Akpinar and Sinem Ertaner) going to Japan to take
part in a workshop he was giving. I envied them, I must say. I had been to
Japan in the 1970s and had admired Japan’s culture and art ever since.
I met him in person at the Vounous event he had come to join all the way from
Japan on September 1, invited by those three ceramic artists. We talked and
exchanged some ideas. Then he came to my exhibition and he got for himself one
of my paintings, telling me that it goes along with Japanese understanding and
that my signature means ‘Bamboo’.
I visited him at his own exhibition which will only last for three days because
he will then return to his country, leaving with us a big smile. Thank you
exhibition was set up by Toya Akpinar and Sinem Ertaner and the whole project was
supported by Girne American University and American University of Cyprus. I had come before
the opening so I had the chance to speak to him again and get a clear picture
of the art work on display. The circle, the bowl, I am a bowl, a cup,
receiving, he says. Yes, we should be. I try to be a bowl myself. I read about his thoughts on his website,
they absolutely meet with mine.
of the pieces on display he had done in Cyprus while here, while in Vounous, he
also tried the Vounous clay and had it fired the Bronze Age style. He has
repeated on paper the design he has used on the pieces, drawings with ink and
brush, he did while I was speaking to him, drawings of the smile, of the mother
goddess, of his home landscape, the circle representing completeness,
everywhere. Also on slabs of stone and cement, on an old Cypriot wooden door he had found.
SOL Atelier is one of the finest I have so far seen here; an architectural master
piece and it fitted the exhibition like a glove. The whole set-up was a feast
for the eyes. Unfortunately we had a power cut and my photos are a bit blurred.
a tea ceremony was to follow which I had to miss and I heard it was well
will come again, he said, next year.
first thought on his list is: “In harmony! We are all friends, all fellow
artists! We are all wonderful beings!”