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Touching Stone Gallery   Santa Fe, USA


Tadashi Mori
August 5 - 31, 2005
Click here to see Tadashi Mori's new show


Tadashi Mori  森 正

'Enku' show

During the early Edo period, a Buddhist monk named Enku (1632-1695) wandered all over Japan, helping the poor along the way. During his travels, he carved some 120,000 wooden statues of the Buddha. No two were alike, these were not elaborate monuments for self-aggrandizement. Many of the statues were crudely carved from tree stumps or scrap wood with a few strokes of a hatchet. Some were given to comfort those who had lost family members, others to guide the dying on their journeys to the afterlife. Thousands of these wooden statues remain today all over Japan.

 As a young man, Tadashi Mori (b. 1940) aspired to be a sculptor. He once retraced Enku’s footsteps around Japan to see those wood carvings. When Mori found his first job in the design department of a ceramic factory, young ceramists in Japan began to experiment with new ideas. Western thinking and aesthetics found fertile ground among these Japanese artists. In 1964, Mori saw the work of contemporary American ceramists in the International Exhibition of Contemporary Ceramic Art organized by the National Museum of Modern Art in Japan. Inspired by the creative energy of American ceramists, Mori began his life-long quest for his own artistic freedom.

 Eager to experience the art and culture that started the Renaissance, Mori resigned from his job in 1970 and traveled to Rome, Italy. Roaming through the magnificent architecture of another ancient civilization, he realized how much humans need nourishment from culture and art. Upon returning to Japan, he chose to be a full-time artist, committing himself to create highly original works, for which he received many awards. His interest in foreign cultures prompted him to study Thai folk art and travel to Thailand through a Japan-Thailand cultural exchange program. Some of Mori’s most important works, including his monumental pieces entitled "Women Who Like to Whisper", are an amalgam of unique multicultural perspectives. In 1997, Mori was selected among twenty-one noted Japanese artists profiled in a book entitled Toward a 21st Century Renaissance in Ceramics (Dohosha Ltd. publisher), in recognition to their contributions to contemporary Japanese ceramics. The late Peter Voulkos, one of the American artists in the 1964 exhibition in Japan, wrote in this volume: "Their commitment is very ambitious and (their) risk taking generates an excitement that at once transcends the boundaries that have constrained the development of new ideas and possibilities that ceramics can afford."

Mori's long journey of artistic and spiritual discovery culminates in this series of ceramic sculptures entitled the Enlightenment Series. Inspired by Enku's Buddha wood carvings, these ceramic sculptures convey a sense of speed and freedom. They look as if they were created in an instant with one sweeping gesture,  spontaneous, irrepressible, irreproducible. His current show Enku is an artistic tour de force, presenting over two dozen new works. Each piece, adorned with colors traditionally for decorating Buddha statues: red, white, metallic silver and gold, represents a singular moment of enlightenment, an ecstatic instant of sudden freedom, an unspeakable joy of letting go.

Click on images to view selected pieces

Inquiry/order:, see Inquiry/Order

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Enlightenment No. 1

Ceramic sculpture   33.5"H x 7" x 5"  (2 views)

Not for sale




Enlightenment No. 3

Ceramic sculpture   15.5"H x 6" x 3"  (2 views)





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Enlightenment No. 4

Ceramic sculpture   23"H x 3.5" x 3"  (2 views)





Enlightenment No. 5

Ceramic sculpture   20"H x 3.5" x 2.5"  (2 views)





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Enlightenment No. 6

Ceramic sculpture   20"H x 3" x 3"  (2 views)




Enlightenment No. 7

Ceramic sculpture   19"H x 5.5" x 5.5"  (2 views)




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Enlightenment No. 9

Ceramic sculpture   17"H x 4" x 3"  (2 views)





Enlightenment No. 10

Ceramic sculpture   14"H x 6" x 3"  (2 views)




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Enlightenment No. 11

Ceramic sculpture   14"H x 5.5" x 3"  (2 views)






Enlightenment No. 12

Ceramic sculpture   13"H x 3" x 3"  (2 views)





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Enlightenment No. 13

Ceramic sculpture   14.5"H x 6" x 2"  (2 views)





Enlightenment No. 14

Ceramic sculpture   12.5"H x 4.5" x 3.5"  (2 views)




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Enlightenment No. 15

Ceramic sculpture   12"H x 7.5" x 4.5"  (2 views)






Enlightenment No. 16

Ceramic sculpture   14"H x 3.5" x 2.5"  (2 views)





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Enlightenment No. 17

Ceramic sculpture   19"H x 3" x 3"  (2 views)






Enlightenment No. 18

Ceramic sculpture   13.5"H x 5.5" x 3"  (2 views)





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Enlightenment No. 19

Ceramic sculpture   12"H x 7.5" x 3.5"  (2 views)






Enlightenment No. 20

Ceramic sculpture   20.5"H x 6" x 3"  (2 views)





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Enlightenment No. 21

Ceramic sculpture   16"H x 4" x 3.5"  (2 views)






Enlightenment No. 22

Ceramic sculpture   16.5"H x 8" x 3"  (2 views)





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Enlightenment No. 23

Ceramic sculpture   19"H x 5" x 4.5"  (2 views)





Enlightenment No. 24

Ceramic sculpture   18"H x 8" x 4"  (2 views)





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Enlightenment No. 25

Ceramic sculpture   19"H x 5.5" x 3.5"  (2 views)






Enlightenment No. 26

Ceramic sculpture   17"H x 7" x 3"  (2 views)





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Enlightenment No. 28

Ceramic sculpture   10"H x 8" x 3.5"  (2 views)





Enlightenment No. 29

Ceramic sculpture   17"H x 4" x 2.5"  (2 views)




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Enlightenment No. 31
Ceramic sculpture   7.5"H x 10" x 4"  (2 views)


Enlightenment No. 30

Ceramic sculpture   23"H x 4" x 3"  (2 views)





1940        Born in Yokkaichi, Mie Prefecture
1958        Graduated from ceramic department, Yokkaichi Technical High School
               Designer in Yokkaichi ceramic factory
1964        Founding member and representative of the DAC potters group
1968        Established studio Tadashi Craft
1973        Founding member of the Nagoya Togei Club
1977        Studied Thai folk art through Japan-Thailand cultural exchange program
1980        Released Song of Summer Grass, a documentary film on Mori's ceramic art
1982        Visited sites in Thailand through Japan-Thailand cultural exchange program
1983        Studied the tea ceremony
1985        Established current studio in Sugitani, Komono-cho

Solo Exhibitions
1964        Imai Gallery, Osaka
1983-89   Imai Department Store, Sapporo
               Gallery Cryness, Sendai
               Kawamoto-Ichibankan, Morioka
               Ikebukuro Seibu, Tokyo
               Akasaka Inui Gallery, Tokyo
               Garando Gallery, Nagoya
               Maruzen Gallery, Nagoya
               Daimaru, Osaka & Kochi
               Horodo, Osaka
               Marukoshi Department Store, Kanazawa
               Tosenbo, Kyoto
               Gallery Maronie, Kyoto
1990        Shibuya Seibu, Tokyo
               Akasaka Inui Gallery
1991        Narita Hotel, Chiba
1992        Yama Gallery, Yokkaichi
               Maruei, Nagoya
1993        Akasaka Inui Gallery
               Mitsukoshi Nihonbashi Main Store, Tokyo
               Maruei, Toyohashi
1994        Hanamido, Kawagoe
               Isetan, Tokyo
1995        Hanamido, Kawagoe
               Maruei, Nagoya
1996        Gallery Tosoan, Nagoya
               Ashikaga Inui Gallery, Ashikaga
               Horodo, Nagoya International Hotel
1997        Rokujuen, Tsushima
1998        Maruei, Toyohashi
               Hashimoto Bijutsu, Nagoya
               Ashikaga Inui Gallery, Ashikaga
1999        Maruei, Nagoya
               Ashikaga Inui Gallery, Ashikaga
2000        Maruei, Toyohashi
               Hashimoto Bijutsu, Nagoya
               Ashikaga Inui Gallery, Ashikaga
2001        Maruei, Toyohashi
               Akasaka Inui Gallery, Tokyo
2002        Hashimoto Bijutsu, Nagoya
               Akasaka Inui Gallery, Tokyo
2003        Maruei, Nagoya
               Hashimoto Bijutsu, Nagoya
               Akasaka Inui Gallery, Tokyo
2004        Hashimoto Bijutsu, Nagoya
               Touching Stone Gallery, Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA
2005        Touching Stone Gallery, Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA

Major Group Exhibitions
1976        Faenza International Ceramic Exhibition, Italy
1990        Senshukai, Hotel Okura, Tokyo
                Meme-Pool Exhibition, Tokyo Ohara Center
                Symposium for Amusement, Saitoan, Hagi
1993        Toh Kaigi 6, Mie Prefectural Museum of Art, Tsu
1994        Toh Kaigi 6, Mie Prefectural Museum of Art, Shizuoka Prefectural Museum of Art

Awards / Selected Publications
1962        Governor of Mie Prize (twice), crafts department of Mie Arts Exhibition
               Chairman of Parliament Prize, crafts department of Mie Arts Exhibition
1963        Governor of Aichi Prize, First Asahi Ceramic Arts Exhibition
               Second Prize, Japan Ceramic Design Competition
1964-70   Silver Prize, Japan Fiber Design Competition
               Copper Prize (twice), Japan Fiber Design Competition
1972        Encouragement Prize, Asahi Ceramic Arts Exhibition
1973        Special Prize (Kawasaki Prize), Asahi Ceramic Arts Exhibition
1975        Special Prize, Chunichi International Ceramic Arts Exhibition
1976        Governor of Aichi Prize, Chunichi International Ceramic Arts Exhibition
1979        Encouragement Prize, Asahi Ceramic Arts Exhibition
1997        Toward a 21st Century Renaissance in Ceramics, Dohosha Ltd. Publisher
2007        "Enku". Ceramics Art & Perception vol. 66, p.30-32.

Public Collections

Okushino Sekitei, Ise All Nipon Airline Hotel, Osaka Taikoen, Osaka Hokke Building, Nobeoka Chinzanso, Tokyo Winghill House, Nikko Narita Hotel, Chiba Nagoya International Hotel Rokujuen, Tsushima