Akiko Hirai

Born: 1970
Place of Birth: Japan

Akiko Hirai was born in Japan in 1970. She moved to London in 1999, studying ceramics at the University of Westminster and Central St. Martins. Akiko’s work is both a blend of Japanese and British studio pottery traditions resulting in asymmetrical, ‘imperfect’ organic forms.

"My preference of choosing types of clay when making white ware is the dark and coarse clay most of the time. The whiteness acts as a membrane or a veil. The hints of the true nature of the material appear slightly on the surface. Dark clay which consists of many impurities induces strong chemical changes in heat and the trace of events remains under the veil when it cools down. White, on the other hand, is more stable because of its purity. It is already settled and has a feeling of “stillness”.

Superficially my work appears to be quiet in white. It does not show the rawness of Mother Nature directly. A symbolic figure always looks more perfect than the actual person he/she is. Imagination and fantasy always reinforce the imperfection and achieve the perfection with its own originality. Therefore the completion of my work is done by the viewers. My work is a creation on its own."

2002-2003 London Institute  Central Saint Martins, School of Graphics and Industrial Design London

2000- 2002 University of Westminster Harrow (transffrred to St. Martins)

1989-1993 Aichi Gakuin University, Japan

Public Collections include: Keramikmuseum Westerwald (Westerwald Ceramic Museum), Germany

Hirai was the subject of a solo exhibition in March 2017.

  • Akiko Hirai

    Medium Moon Jar

    2017
    Stoneware
    H:43cm D:35cm
    £2,200
  • Akiko Hirai

    Still Life Bottles and Yunomis

    2017
    Stoneware
    H:7-25cm W:6-10cm
    £45 - £200
  • Akiko Hirai

    Ash Dobin Teapot

    2017
    Stoneware
    H:23cm W:15cm
    £200
  • Akiko Hirai

    Dry Kohiki Jug & Dry Kohiki Milk Jug

    2017
    Stoneware
    H:9-22cm D:7-17cm
    £65 - £220
  • Akiko Hirai

    Large Korean Ash Bowls

    2017
    Stoneware
    H:9cm D:21cm
    £240 each
  • Akiko Hirai

    Black and Ash Teabowl & Grey and Green Teabowl

    2017
    Stoneware
    H:7-8cm D:13.5-14.5cm
    £200 each (left sold)
  • Akiko Hirai

    Fossil Plate II

    2017
    Stoneware
    H:7cm D:40cm
    £300
  • Akiko Hirai

    Sake Bottles & Sake Cups

    2017
    Stoneware
    H:5.5-14cm D:6-10cm
    £120 (bottles sold) & £60 (cups - one cup available)
  • Akiko Hirai

    Small Tripod Vase, Large Tripod Vase & Pod Vase I

    2017
    Stoneware
    H:14-17cm D:12-15cm
    £200 - £220 (middle and right sold)
  • Akiko Hirai

    Kohiki Fluted Vase I & II

    2017
    Stoneware
    H:24-27cm D:14-18cm
    £300 each (right sold)
  • Akiko Hirai

    Dry Kohiki Cereal Bowls (Cream & Grey)

    2017
    Stoneware
    H:8cm D:9.5-13cm
    £80 each (right sold)
  • Akiko Hirai

    Dry Kohiki Faceted Mugs

    2017
    Stoneware
    H:8cm W:9.5cm
    £65 each (left and right sold)
  • Akiko Hirai

    Dry Kohiki Flower Mugs

    2017
    Stoneware
    H:8cm W:9.5cm
    £65 each
  • Akiko Hirai

    Still Life Bottles

    2017
    Black clay, stoneware and glazed stoneware
    H:14 - 28 (approx)cm
    £65 - £90
    Photograph: William Van Esland
  • Akiko Hirai

    Akiko Hirai in her studio

    2015