Yoko Sekino-Bové was born in Osaka, Japan. She graduated from Musashino Art University in Tokyo with a BA in graphic design. She moved to the US to study advertising and worked in L.A. until her love of ceramics led her to pursue a professional career. In 2002, she began her Masters of Fine Art at the University of Oklahoma, and she currently maintains her own studio in Washington, PA while teaching ceramics classes at local community centers and art classes at Waynesburg University in Pennsylvania. Yoko is a 2011 finalist for the Niche awards for professional wheel-thrown ceramics and a teapot devisions.
Her speciality is detailed underglaze decoration called Sgraffito and she uses botanical and animal imagery as a means of expressing her emotions, insights and fancies. The quiet gestures of the imagery, paired with the traditionally and technically beautiful forms in porcelain, translate into inspiring vessels.
“My porcelain work represents the integration of my collective emotions, curiosities, insights, and fancies in shapes of plants and animals. I have chosen plants and various creatures to deliver subtle, quiet gestures that carry the emotions. Their passive yet consistent interaction with other elements in nature is more like a whisper, and their short lives leave echoes that linger in the air long after they are gone. The forms I developed are primarily for practical usage but also to challenge the users to exercise their imagination. Form and the surface design entwine to create a story, yet it is the function that establishes the identity. When a ceramic work is made, it is three-dimensional; it should be experienced from every angle, touched and used by human hands. I believe that functional ceramic work invites people to engage in an intimate relationship beyond that function through usage. It is my hope that this work offers emotions, fancies, and insights to the viewers and reminds them that there are some rituals we subconsciously participate in our everyday lives with objects of daily use.”