Haramachi Revisited 1992

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This black and white ceramic sculpture installation, Haramachi Revisited, was inspired by edible roasted fish skewered on sticks that were seen at a roadside stand in Haramachi, Japan. Through a play on numbers and colors, four and death are homonyms in Japanese, nine for travail, black is associated with death in Western culture, much as is white associated with Buddhist burial rites. The backside of the fish has been underglazed black, while the naturalistic front side is white, with a realistically glazed fisheye. These hand formed clay fish were low fired at C/04, then sawdust fired or smoked. To install each ceramic fish, it has been skewered and suspended on a steel stake. The suspended, skewered fish serve as metaphors; they capture the dichotomy between life and death polarities, as well as reveal the cyclic nature of our existence. These fish, while frozen in space and time, are imbued with the potential for movement and life. The balance and harmony of this existence is embodied not only within the fish, but also in the symmetry of the grid of the installation.