From January 31 to February 29, Gallery 'Iolani at Windward Community College hosted an exhibit of David Kuraoka's recent work in clay and bronze. David is a native son of Hawaii, having grown up on Kauai. For decades he taught at San Francisco State University and became a professor of art and head of the ceramics department. He is now an emeritus professor and divides his time between his studios in San Francisco and Kauai. He's best known for his pit fired ceramics, often large bulbous forms perfectly shaped with random markings from the minerals in the fire. David continues to pit fire, but he's also begun working more with 2-D tiles and in bronze. In this exhibit, he's making pieces that are similar in shape but one will be in clay and the other in bronze. It's interesting seeing them side by side and comparing both their shapes and their surfaces. I've seen David's work many times before, but it especially struck me in this exhibit how surface decoration and color can have their own shape, and the way that 2-D decoration can effect our perception of 3-D form. He also had several pieces that seemed to move in the direction that's been blazed by Jun Kaneko, especially the large piece in the middle of the room. But even though the piece juts up like a pole, I felt its movement was circular, almost horizontal. The descriptions are ones the gallery provided.
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