However, the regular form and in particular design and handle show a modern Western influence. Asian Art Department, AGNSW, February 2006 Fujiwara Yu (1932-2001) Born as the eldest son of Living National Treasure for bizen ware Fujiwara Kei, after graduating from university, Fujiwara worked for a time as a magazine editor, but was convinced by his father and Oyama Fujio to return home where he began his tutelage in ceramics under his father. After this, Fujiwara went on to produce work after work, presenting them in exhibitions by the Nihon Kogeikai, the Gendai Nihon Togei, and the Issuikai, eventually becoming a member of the latter in 1960, and becoming a regular member of the Nihon Kogei Association the following year. Fujiwara won the grand prix prize in the Barcelona International Pottery Exhibit, which then gained him attention in the United States, Canada, Spain and various other countries in 1964 when he was asked to instruct in pottery around the world as a visiting lecturer.
Fujiwara opened his own workshop in Honami, Bizen in 1967, and after starting to work independently, won the Nihon Toji Kyokaisho award, thereupon going on to win the Kanashige Toyo award in 1973 and being recognised as an Important Intangible Cultural Property by Okayama Prefecture in 1978. In 1984, he won the Sanyo Shimbunsha Award, was awarded the Medal of Honor with a dark blue ribbon by the Japanese Government and won the Okayama-ken Bunkasho Award both in 1985, the Chugoku Bunkasho Award in 1986, the Okanichi Geijutsu Bunka Korosho Award in 1987, and the Geijutsu Sensho Monbu Taijinsho Award in 1990. With such a prestigious history of awards behind him, Fujiwara became the 4th person to be designated a Living National Treasure for bizen ware in 1996 after Toyo, Kei, and Yamamoto Toshu, and was also awarded the Medal of Honor with purple ribbon by the Government of Japan in 1998. Striving to create ceramics that placed an importance of usability that would be suitable as both tea bowls and for dining while also working to bring out the uniquely quiet and subdued simplicity of the works of bizen ware to the utmost, Fujiwara's works serve as the basis of modern bizen wares that place an emphasis on both usability and beauty.