Sugiura Yasuyoshi received both his undergraduate and graduate degrees from Tokyo National University of Fine Art and Music. In the late 1980s and early 1990s, together with his compatriots Hoshino Satoru and Akiyama Yo_ (both on view in this gallery), he created large-scale non-functional installation pieces. Recently, however, he has been producing meticulously rendered floral studies. Although these works are representational, Sugiura insists that the nature of the clay itself is his inspiration: "If I just said, 'Hey, here's a flower I happened to make in clay,' without being able to bring the depth of the material to life, then that clay flower can only be what it is: an artificial flower. Clay is the thing that shouldn't be forgotten."