Born in Kyoto, Iwao Shinno graduated from Kinki University in Osaka, Japan, and then studied ceramics in Kyoto in the early 1980s. He began making ceramics in Otsu City of the Shiga Prefecture in 1987.
“In my work I aim to express stillness and motion by creating forms and clay lines embodying tension and relaxation, and also capture the play of faint light and shadow on the body. I pursue an overall harmony in my work without losing the dynamic contrast of these two opposing elements.” — Shinno
Shinno has received many awards for his work, including the Shiga Prefecture Cultural Award in 2016, the Japan Ceramic Society Award in 2015 and the 23rd Shumei Culture Prize in 2013. His ceramics are held in several international public collections, such as the Ibaraki Ceramic Art Museum, The Shigaraki Ceramic Cultural Park and the Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park in Michigan.