Kimiyo Mishima

Japanese (b. 1932)



Glazed stoneware with screenprint

Gift of Hazel and William R. Hough


Mishima’s sculptures often take the form of “breakable printed matter.” For decades, her ceramics have humorously and critically engaged the contemporary obsession with and consumption of information in the form of newspapers, packing boxes, comic books, and monumental trash bins.

This work is carefully crafted to resemble cardboard and paper ready for the trash. Mishima screenprints text and logos onto the clay to create ceramic versions of disposable objects. Her choice of subject matter, disposable packaging elevated to art, references Andy Warhol’s Brillo Boxes and playfully recalls Duchamp’s readymades, though in an inverted manner—rather than presenting actual cardboard boxes and newspaper as art, she painstakingly recreates it in clay.

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