Living and Giving

The Classic Pamela Positive: Start By Listening

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“My goal is to extract a design that emerges from the essence of the music rather than to decorate its story…   This process usually takes two to three months of immersing myself in the opera by listening to it 200 to 300 times.”

– Jun Kaneko

Ceramic Artist 


Master designer Jun Kaneko provides the design for the San Francisco Opera’s production of The Magic Flute…and what a powerful way he envisages how to create this vision for us all. It’s synergistic, based on pulling all elements together and starting with one of the most important qualities… listening.


No matter your profession, you can be a good listener today. You might listen to the preschool kids you manage. You might listen to your elderly dog that would like a nice tummy rub. You might listen to your neighbor who asked you to trim the tree so it doesn\’t hang over his property. Or you might create an amazing work of art such as Jun Kaneko through The Magic Flute. While his work seems supra-important, every person\’s effort to listen is just as important. 


If we listened and did this for hours like Jun, everyone would be happy. Relationships with people would be lovely.

The World Can Be Lovely If We Will Just Listen,



Jun Kaneko is a Japanese-American visual artist, with sculptures and other artwork in more than 50 museums. He has previously worked on opera productions for Madama Butterfly and Fidelio. His works in clay explore the effects of repeated abstract surface motifs. He was the Production Designer for the San Francisco Opera’s production of The Magic Flute, which opened in June 2012.

Kaneko is married to sculptor Ree Kaneko who is also an American artist, arts administrator, and art consultant from Omaha, Nebraska. The couple first met when Ree attended a workshop on Ceramic Sculpture with Tony Hepburn, held June 8–14, 1981, at the Omaha Brickworks. They have two daughters, Susan Schonlau and Troia Schonlau, from a prior marriage. Both daughters work at the Kankeo Studio

Bio Source: Wikipedia  Fig¹. Photo by Scott Drickey on ipa  Fig². Photo by Christin Hume on Unsplash  Fig³. Photo by  Juri Gianfrancesco on Unsplash