Courtesy of Thomas Scharenborg
By Jane Gonzalez-Meyer
Seven years ago, Yukari Kashihara and her husband, Thomas Scharenborg, converted their hundred-year-old house in Rocheport into the Shirahaze Gallery, a live-in art studio featuring Yukari’s ceramics.
Yukari, a native of Osaka, Japan, describes her hand-painted artwork as contemporary with a Japanese twist. And though her pieces are decorative, they are also practical. She crafts mugs with tiny birds on the handle, so tea drinkers can wrap their tea string around them. Her teapot designs also feature plants and flowers, including pink cherry blossoms that are common in Japan. Some of her teapots are shaped like elephants.
Yukari grew up around her father’s collection of traditional Japanese artwork. As an adult, she studied art at the University of Missouri-Columbia and graduated with a Master of Fine Arts in ceramics. She and her husband settled in Rocheport because they loved the natural scenery.
Yukari’s artwork has appeared in competitions like Columbia’s Art in the Park, and her pieces have been featured in Teapots: Contemporary Explorations of Timeless Designs. Her ceramics are also displayed in multiple galleries, including one in Key West, Florida.
“My artwork evolves, and of course it should,” she says. “If your life is changing, your artwork should change also.”
Visit the gallery at 200 2nd Street, or call 573-356- 7154 for more information.