Exhibition: Keiko Masumoto “motif/vessel” at the ICN gallery

The current exhibition at the ICN gallery in Shoreditch features one of my favourite artists whose work I have seen at the gallery – Keiko Masumoto.

My first thought on stepping into the gallery was to watch my head – there were ceramic geese flying towards me as if someone had just opened up a cage and let them out. As I looked down, I realised I also needed to watch my feet, as there was art on the floor too. This was an unusually laid out exhibition, making it all the more interesting to wander around.

Keiko Masumoto "motif/vessel" @ ICN gallery

I found the ceramic birds slightly chaotic, but loved the way they were hung and how they seemed to be flying right out of the surface of the pots. The shadows the birds made on the walls and floor were quite interesting too and, as you can see in Atsuko & Joe’s blog, the exhibition looks very different during the day compared to how it looks at night.

Keiko Masumoto "motif/vessel" @ ICN gallery

Keiko Masumoto "motif/vessel" @ ICN gallery

All of Keiko Masumoto’s work that I’ve seen so far seems to be concerned with breaking the usual shape of things. She allows the motif to break free from the vessel, adding energy to what would be a static pot.

Keiko Masumoto "motif/vessel" @ ICN gallery

Keiko Masumoto "motif/vessel" @ ICN gallery

As well as the geese, some of Masumoto’s other work was on display in the gallery. Although I have seen many of these pieces before, I still felt drawn to them – especially this wonderful pagoda pot:

Keiko Masumoto "motif/vessel" @ ICN gallery

This pot (below) also fascinated me, as it seemed to be a pot within a pot. When you look inside this pot, there is another one, and I was so excited by it that I managed to get other people to come and stare into the pot with me too.

Keiko Masumoto "motif/vessel" @ ICN gallery

Some of Masumoto’s work shows humour, such as this ice lolly pot:

Keiko Masumoto "motif/vessel" @ ICN gallery

At first you don’t quite notice it, but when you realise what you’re looking at it makes you smile.

My favourite piece in the exhibition, although I can’t really put my finger on why, is this octopus pot:

Keiko Masumoto "motif/vessel" @ ICN gallery

You might remember this other octopus piece by Masumoto which I have featured on this blog before:

octopus/pot

The brown octopus piece is much smaller the Matsumoto’s other octopus pot, but I love the detail and think it would make a really unusual ornament in the right kind of room.

If you like your art a little bit more traditional and delicate, you might like Masumoto’s plates, which also continue the concept of the motif breaking free from the object.

Keiko Masumoto "motif/vessel" @ ICN gallery

Keiko Masumoto "motif/vessel" @ ICN gallery

Keiko Masumoto "motif/vessel" @ ICN gallery

I especially love the temple piece above.

Masumoto’s work is certainly unusual, and I don’t think these pictures really do the exhibition justice. Check it out yourself if you can!

Keiko Masumoto’s exhibition, “motif/vessel”, is on at the ICN gallery until 30th November. For more information, please visit: www.icn-global.com. You can also find out more about Keiko on her website.

Keiko Masumoto "motif/vessel" @ ICN gallery

Keiko Masumoto

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