Fathers and Sons: The Art of Filial Piety

Navigating the sea of filial relationship is not easy for the son of an artist, especially in a society like Japan where filial piety has been a dominant ethos. How in the shadow of the father’s fame can the son achieve artistic independence without being side-tracked by rebellious ambition or burdened by self-erasing caution? In two forthcoming shows, Joan B. Mirviss Ltd. explores how two sons, Wakao Kei (b. 1967) and Suzuki Tetsu (b.1964), are successfully navigating these potentially turbulent artistic waters. Both Tetsu, the son of the National Living Treasure Suzuki Osamu (b.1934), and Kei, the son of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Gifu prefecture, Wakao Toshisada (b.1937), honor their fathers by embracing the ceramic traditions of Mino potters while forging their own distinctive paths within those traditions.