“Bamboo basketry for me is an expression of detailed precision. These baskets represent a search for the beauty and precision in nature and a way to balance the chaos evident in these times.”
Jiro Yonezawa has been a bamboo artist for the best part of forty years and he has honed his craft inside the distinct cultures of Japan and the United States, and across three formative periods in his life. In Japan, from 1981 onwards, he studied at the Beppu Vocational Arts Training Center, apprenticed with Masakazu Ono, and furthered his training at the Oita Prefectural Beppu Industrial Art Research Institute. In 1989 he moved to the US where his exposure to the contemporary art scene had a profound and liberating effect on his work, with his baskets becoming bigger and bolder until they graduated into the large sculptural pieces he is now recognized for. In 2008 he returned to his hometown in Japan and built a new studio in Saiki City, Oita Prefecture, where he has matured his practice and become actively involved in the local art and craft communities.