Ichi Kitahara: Sandblasted Elephant's Foot with Bamboo
Ok, someone just replaced my brain with a bag of cats. Though, broadly speaking, much of Ichi Kitahara's work would fall into something of a nature inspired, sculptural motif, he does make occasional forays into the world of Zen Moderne, and when he does, more often than not it will appear in a Dublin. When I first saw noted the body of wicked bamboo Elephant's foot, Takeo Arita (whose shapes I have personally held as the finest representations of ZM ever executed in briar) immediately came to mind. While Ichi makes no overt attempt to evoke "the spirit of the machine" (in Arita fashion) there is an almost CAD efficiency and cleanliness of line at play in the bowl. The depth of the blast is so fine, and the quality stellar, that it almost brings to mind the work of Peter Heeschen. From there, however, Kitahara kicks any anima ex machina
to the curb, replacing the same with a curious, compositionally dominant four knuckle bamboo ferrule, as well as a larger-than-expected stem. In time, I might understand this combination of election, but at this very second - well, please see first line.
--R. 'Bear' Graves