Studio visit: Mizuyo Yamashita

Visit to Mizuyo Yamashita's Studio


Seven floors above the heart of Hackney and its bustling Broadway Market (accessed via a large, rickety goods lift!),  Mizuyo’s studio is a tranquil space, illuminated by natural light flooding in through large windows that frame a rare, unobscured view across London.

A true working studio, the space immediately comes to life through the paraphernalia dispersed around the room.  Large sacks of clay and rows of glazes in recycled milk bottles, stacks of clay-coated bats and shelves filled with work at various stages of completion, and in amongst them,  wonderful personal trinkets and curiosities interlaced throughout the space, all telling the story of the day-to-day ventures of the studio.



Ceiling to floor shelves are filled with work, an extensive display of forms, techniques and experimentations.  Drawing from the everyday and inspired by European interior design and traditional Japanese techniques, including Shinogi, Mishima and Kohiki, Mizuyo throws forms that explore the grandeur of the material whilst attaining a humble functionality.


“The inspirations for my work come from a wide range of archeological artefact, everyday objects, the forms in the nature as well as materials and processes in ceramics and other crafts. Through my work I am trying to explore the beauty and materiality while obtaining the functions of everyday objects.”

Mizuyo lets her true artist surge when wearing her clay-covered headphones, allowing her to be in the moment, delight in the material and the process. In combining various clays and an unglazed finish she elevates the medium’s innate qualities. In conjunction with developing her work, her studio serves as a teaching space where she offers a range of workshops for the beginner and intermediate potter.

“I strongly dislike throwing away belongings that I hold dear. So, when customers approached me about buying new pieces to replace their old ones which had broken, it was only natural for me to present them with the alternative of mending their own instead through the practice of Kintsugi.”

Inspired and intrigued by the incredible variety and distinctive display of work, forms, textures and glazes (and excited by a selection of small pots filled with greenery, and a shared fondness for flora), conversation flowed between Mizuyo and Karen, and we now anxiously await the arrival of a new collection, and pleased to have finalised the details of some exciting future events, including our upcoming Kintsugi workshop and Japanese exhibition!

Mizuyo Yamashita works in her studio at TOKOBO pottery,