Sinuous, and contained, they are smooth to the touch, sit gentle on the finger, and are so wonderfully proportioned that they seem to inhabit one's hand...
Japanese born, German based artist Yutaka Minegishi is an elusive but brilliant maker. He uses rosewood, ebony, maple and ivory sourced from the long buried tusk of a woolly mammoth to carve exquisite rings that flow and twist around the finger. Trained as a goldsmith first in Tokyo and then at the Academy of Fine Arts in the art jewellery Mecca of Munich, this master craftsman and musician prefers to keep a low profile, producing only a handful of exquisitely hand-carved rings each year and rarely exhibiting. Supple and sculptural, Minegishi's work draws from natural forms and a distinctly Japanese sensibility. He combines these elements with a playful wit and uncompromising technical skill.
Julie Ewington writes of Minegishi's work, "On the face of it, [his] rings seem perfectly elegant. Sinuous, and contained, they are smooth to the touch, sit gentle on the finger, and are so wonderfully proportioned that they seem to inhabit one's hand. Always made of a single substance, each is focused on their material, be it wood or jet, which is a fossilised wood, or a mammoth tusk, or stones such as agate and peerless rock crystal. I have pored over their perfection for years, admired the way Minegishi releases the innate desire of materials, his persuasiveness of touch. But I never noticed, until now, that this faultless precision is performed, on occasion, but a straight-faced joker..."
I like massive, pure, dense natural materials that are one color. There are not so many of them. I work with what I get.
Yutaka Minegeishi studied metal craft at Hiko Mizuno College of Jewelry in Tokyo before moving to Germany in 1995 as a guest student of Fachhochschule, Pforzheim and then as a Masters student of the Akademie der Bildenden Künste, Munich. He completed his Diploma in 2003 under the tutelage of Professor Otto Künzli and has since held solo exhibitions in Munich and Tokyo, as well as participating in many international group exhibitions.
A large part of Minegishi’s practice is his hand carving from single blocks of material. In 2013 he exhibited his works in ebony, mammoth ivory and rose ivory amongst other materials in his first Australian solo show, Mainly Twisted at Gallery Funaki. His work was also included in Unexpected Pleasures at the NGV in Melbourne and the London Design Museum in 2012, and can be found in the permanent collections of the Pinakothek der Moderne, Munich, Museum Ceskeho Raje, Czech Republic and the Stichting Francoise van den Bosch, Amstelveen.