Nagae Shigekazu 長江重和, Shape of Earth: Rat Zodiac incense box 戊子のかたち, with Signed Wood Box, Porcelain, Dia2.8"xH2.1"; Shape of Earth: Ox Zodiac incense box 己丑のかたち, with Signed Wood Box, Porcelain, Dia3.5"xH3.2"; Shape of Metal: Tiger Zodiac incense box 庚寅のかたち, with Signed Wood Box, Porcelain, Dia3.2"xH3.2"
Dai Ichi Arts is pleased to spotlight several new arrivals in the gallery, including a group of works by Nagae Shigekazu 長江重和. The above trio of incense containers are abstract interpretations of the cardinal three animals of the Zodiac: the Rat, Ox and Tiger. They have delicately textured surfaces of Nagae's signature white porcelain, and brilliant aqua blue pools of celadon glaze, showing their mythos.
One imagines the river that the animals crossed in their Zodiac race that placed them in their order: The Ox and Tiger, submerged in the pool of waters, swam across the river, while the Rat sat cleverly on the Ox's head, recognizing that the river would wash his small body away. Nagae renders this nostalgic Zodiac story modern. He is both technically brilliant, and has a great sensibility for the art of geometric abstraction, considering subject and object carefully.
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