NIPPON Kichi - 日本吉

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2007/2/1


大堀相馬焼 Oobori-souma-yaki Obori-soma Ware

Jp En

Obori-soma ware is the local pottery of Obori, Namie Town, Fukushima Prefecture. In 1690, Sama, a servant of Hangai Kyukan, an Aima domain samurai, established this pottery.

The Soma domain encouraged pottery-making, so, by the end of the Edo period, there were about 100 kilns for the area.

Since the Meiji period, however, the number of kilns has decreased and now only 24 kilns are making pottery that follows this 300-year tradition. Obori-soma ware is pottery that has been loved by commoners since the end of the Edo period.

The ware mainly produced is 'blue crack', which features a cracked celadon-blue glaze. The vessels are double-layered to keep tea inside hot; the running-horse motif is painted by hand.

In 1978, Obori-soma ware was designated as a National Traditional Handicraft.
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2007/1/28


信楽焼 Sigaraki-yaki Shigaraki Pottery

Jp En

Shigaraki yaki is a traditional pottery fired in Shigaraki town, Koka, in Shiga Prefecture. It is one of the six original ceramic sites of ancient Japan.

The origin of Shigaraki ware can be traced to the piece Shigaraki-no-miya, which was made by order of the Shomu Emperor in the Tenpei period. Later in the Kamakura, Muromachi, and Ando-momoyama periods, Shigaraki ware was used for tea ceremony implements. In the Edo period, Shigaraki ware began to be acknowledged as an everyday ware.

Nowadays, Shigaraki ware consists of various forms for different purposes. Characteristics of Shigaraki pottery are its odor of natural mud and the cracks in its surface made by fire. In other words, the mixture of mud and fire creates a sophisticated pottery with the elegant naturalism of wabisabi.

In 1976, Shigaraki ware was designated as an important cultural asset.
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2007/1/11


琉球ガラス Ryuukyuu-Garasu Ryukyu Glass

Jp En

Ryukyu handcrafted glass is made on the main island of Okinawa, and was probably first manufactured some 100 years ago.

Ryukyu glass production developed rapidly after the last world war, with the demand for Coca Cola and juice by the American forces. This development formed the basis for today’s Ryukyu glass handicraft.

The craftsmanship of the glassmakers gives a distinctive warmth to the glass: in the wave-like cracked patterns and the tiny bubbles that have formed in the tinted glass objects.

In today’s materialistic and technical world, the distinctive appearance of Ryukyu glass is recognized as an artwork of light, blended in everyday life.

In 1988, Ryukyu glass was designated a Traditional Craft of Okinawa, and a representative Okinawan craft.
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"Nippon-kichi" leads you to places, people and things that reveal a certain Japanese aesthetic.

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