Later this month The Craft & Folk Art Museum in Los Angeles will unveil Bamboo; a group show of 30 works that explore the trajectory of Japanese bamboo basketry and sculpture. Drawn mostly from the Los Angeles-based Cotsen Collection, this exhibition reflects the evolution of the a unique art form, from fine Chinese-style tea ceremony baskets to striking contemporary sculptures.
Fine bamboo basketry gained a foothold in Japanese culture during Japan's medieval period (1185-1573 CE), as the Chinese tea ceremony became an important part of Japanese lifestyle. The demand for fine Chinese-style bamboo tea and flower arranging vessels resulted in numerous artists and apprentices devoted to the art form.
Though earlier artists were emulating Chinese forms, by the mid-19th century Japanese bamboo artists were making artist-signed baskets with a distinctly Japanese aesthetic that embraced the imperfect and organic simplicity known as wabi-sabi. From the 20th century to present day, bamboo basketry gradually became less functional, and more sculptural.
Featuring a large-scale, site-specific installation by Japan-based artist and architect Akio Hizume among many other innovative artists working with basketry today, this exhibition celebrates the creativity that fuels this ancient art, to this day.
Bamboo, 27 May - 9 September, 2018
Craft and Folk Art Museum, 5814 Wilshire Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA 90036www.cfarfoundation.org