Seji Okuda


Okuda simply called his product color "white" and "black". Both of them use sticky clay, and Okuda told that he is particular about using clay that is not too rough, not too powdery, and has moderate roughness from Shigaraki's clay shop. Many of these rough clay items in Japan are heavier, but I was surprised when i picked up his ceramics that they were lighter than I expected.

Each unique color leaks out of the contrasting black and white ceramics

We met Seji Okuda at the Shigaraki Ceramic Craft Market, which was held in Shiga prefecture.
Due to the influence of Corona, there were several cancellations, the one I went to should have been held in the spring, but was postponed and held in the summer. In the hot summer sunshine, Okuda's simple black and white items are dazzling and caught my eyes.

The glossy black items have traces of slow dripping of glaze, and when illuminated by light, a faint green or blue color can be seen. It's black, but it's not too black. It's a single color, but various colors are hidden, and the more you look at it, the deeper the color appear. Okuda’s white ceramics have a surface where you can enjoy the rough feel of the soil more. As with black, red clay is used, which turns black when baked. When white glaze was applied, you can see that Okuda is particular about the color that black soil appears thinly in gray depending on how the glaze is applied.

Creating in the ceramic town of Shigaraki, inheriting his father's kiln

奥田誠二 Seji Okuda

Seji Okuda, who makes contrasting black and white ceramic dishes in Shigaraki. Shigaraki is known as one of the famous cities for ceramics in Japan, and there are many pottery shops along the big road running through the heart of Shigaraki, with many ceramic artists living in the area. Okuda was born and raised in Shiga prefecture, and his father was one of the Shigaraki ceramic artist & teachers. From a young age he watched his father work and was surrounded by ceramics each day. However it was not his dream to become a ceramic artist as a child.

One day, Okuda had a chance encounter with the man who would become his future master, a ceramic artist from Shigaraki. Okuda decided to pay him a short visit, just to talk with him and his friend.
The time spent there brought Okuda back to the times of his childhood and sparked new energy and excitement in his heart for ceramics.