THE SKIN OF A WHITE HOLE by Rosanna Albertini
They all dream of water: the clay, the flowers to be, and the artist who knows too well how life, the fluid substance of life, is more consistent and powerful than ideas. He has made ceramic objects and sculptures long enough to feel the voice of the clay in his fingers. It’s the empirical knowledge of the maker, but Mineo is Japanese despite his many years in Los Angeles, and his sculptural effort doesn’t go against the unstoppable change of every form which is alive. His agreement with reality makes him able to wrap his mind round the growth of leaves and branches, to merge his forms into the passage of seasons. If he must move, his art moves along with him.
“He must create his unreal world out of what is real.” (Wallace Stevens)
Who told you matter is inert? I can see the cows who gave their bones to English factories to improve the whiteness and translucency of traditional porcelain; magma from earth’s belly thrown up by volcanos, crystals solidified in rocks, chemical weddings of mineral and animal bodies, and the china clay out of Kao-Ling’s crystals, called Kaolin from a Chinese hill mined for centuries so that Chinese porcelain could be made, and the European as well after a French Jesuit brought to Europe samples of Kaolin in the eighteenth century. There is a long story of migrations, of natural splashing, spitting and dealing with the atmosphere. Humans are part of it. Built up and eroded by space and time, our physical presence is so fragile that we seek protection in our thoughts, as if they weren’t part of the chemistry … and artists pour water on the dryness of words.
Porcelain time for Mineo. Bone China must bloom. Cow bones almost disappeared in contemporary clay. The newborn forms by Mineo will show their happiness with being free from industrial shapes and patterns of cups, plates, vases and teapots spread everywhere by the liquid connection between continents, from the Etruscan to the British and Portuguese ages. The new forms are so irregular, their skin so thin and personal that I can’t avoid seeing them as bodies. “Don’t touch me, I can’t be used, I’m already a flower.” Yes? “But I’m credible, my maker made me so, maybe he is also credible, as poets are, don’t you know? A white hole keeps us clear, for mystery is far from us and you can see your flops of faith in each of us, we will never serve you. But pour your dreams in us, they will fly.”
“What the whole world could not contain, did Mary contain.” [A medieval saying] “There is more real sex in that one sentence than in all the so-called erotic literature ever penned. And it is exactly about the principle of matter, whose activity is fully and willingly to receive.” (in Dirt-The Ecstatic Skin of the Earth, by William Bryant Logan, 1995)