I moved to the United States from Japan ten years ago as a foreign exchange student. My story begins with the limited knowledge of the English language I came here with. My primary commonality with other people and with my surroundings was of the human gesture: facial expressions, body motions, the darting of a hand or blinking of an eye.
In my struggle to learn the language and communicate through speech I gained a strong empathy for the universal experiences that seem to provide the undercurrent to language. I gained awareness for the complexities of our daily functions, and the social infrastructures that subtly guide these interactions.
In my sculpture I seek figurative extensions of these shared experiences. Clay has become another primary source of communication for me. The vocabulary consists of gestures, patterns, textures, colors and rhythms. In conversation these qualities bring the figure to life.
With clay I look for sculptural conversations that evoke the beauty, the subtleties, the sadness and the humor of our everyday life. In viewing my sculpture I hope for people to enjoy the moment, rather then the movement of time. I hope for my work to fill the space between two seemingly distant things, to provide a connection and thus create the story of you and me.
— Kensuke Yamada