PHOTOS BY RYAN WILLMS
We first spotted Shino Takeda’s awkwardly lovable, one-of-a-kind ceramic spoons and desert-style dishes at Caitlin Mociun’s store in Brooklyn, but the ceramicist’s work is a testament to the fact that you can still find amazing things on Etsy if you know where to look: Takeda keeps a store there called “Shino’s World,” and browsing its vases and bowls, you really get the sense that she lives inside her own storybook, where tea sets are named after bluebirds and sake cups appear poised to kiss. But we didn’t know much more about the real Shino until last week, when Inventory Magazine took a more literal look inside her world — with editor Ryan Willms photographing her at work in her Brooklyn studio — and so we couldn’t resist the chance to feature the story here in an attempt to put all the pieces together. The text of Inventory’s piece is below, along with a few of the images, but you can see a lot more back at Inventory’s own site, including a portrait of the ceramicist herself.
“Shino Takeda grew up in Japan on the southern island of Kyushu, where, by way of her family and community, she was surrounded by a rich history in ceramics and art. It was only after relocating to New York City that Shino began creating pottery under her own name, and by doing so began to pursue a profession that was deeply rooted in the Japanese traditions of her past. Soon after arriving in New York from Japan, Shino visited a midtown Manhattan studio with a friend and was inspired by the artists who occupied the space. Unbeknownst to her, she would later call this very studio a second home, earning her living producing ceramics for a number of independent boutiques around the world.
“The handmade, uneven and organic feel of Shino’s work has become part of her signature. Her use of irregular shapes, experimental colours and a combination of rough and smooth surfaces make for lovely objects, whether for everyday use or just to keep on display. Her Manhattan studio is shared with several other New York-based artists, some very traditional and others more contemporary in their work. In 2012, Inventory began working with Shino Takeda to produce a special offering of ceramics – a continuing series of small cups, bowls and planters – for our own retail environment.”