NIPPON Kichi - 日本吉

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森口華弘 Moriguchi Kakou Kakou Moriguchi

Jp En

Kakou Moriguchi was born in 1909 in Moriyama district, Shiga prefecture. In 1921, he studied pharmacy at night school. In 1924, he became the student of the 3rd yuzen dyeing master, Kason Nakagawa, and studied the Japanese art of hikita houshou.

Until he established a studio in 1939, he remained in the atelier of Kason, where he made further studies of yuzen. Later, he blended typical makinori techniques inherited from the Edo period and urusshi-no-makie. The blend Moriguchi created is called 'makinori' and has become representative of his work. It has both a traditional Kyoto flavor and a contemporary one. As a result, he has given something new and original to yuzen.

In 1956, he entered three makinori yuzen kimonos: 'Oshidori', 'Soushun' and 'Matsu' to the 2nd Exhibition of Japanese Traditional Art Crafts and all of them won a prize. For the 3rd Exhibition of Japanese Traditional Art Crafts, his yuzen kimono 'Kaoru' again won a prize. Consequently, he was elected to be the judge of the competition.

In 1968, when only 57, he became the holder of an important intangible cultural asset. He is one of Japan's Living National Treasures.
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琉球絣 Ryuukyuu-kasuri Ryukyu Kasuri Ikat

Jp En

Ryukyu Kasuri is an ikat cloth woven in the town of Haebaru in Okinawa. It is also the collective term for any ikat made in Okinawa.
   Ryukyu Kasuri is said to date back to the 14th and 15th centuries. It developed from South-East Asian ikat but its designs feature unique motifs based on Okinawan nature and fauna.
   Silk is the main thread used for Ryukyu Kasuri, and is dyed with both natural and chemical dyes. It is mainly produced as a roll of cloth. Hanging wall cloths for the summer season are also made.
   To make ikat, warp and weft threads are dyed and woven by hand in ordered patterns. Before weaving, the threads are mounted on a frame, tied in selected areas, then dyed. The threads are then dried and loosened, and carefully woven on a wooden loom to form the pattern.
   The simple prints and the geometrical patterns of Ryukyu Kasuri create an exotic atmosphere.
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与那国織 Yonaginiori Yonaguni-Ori Textiles

Jp En

Yonaguni-ori is a textile that shows both an idyllic and a simple flavor. It originated at the westernmost edge of Japan, on the Okinawan island of Yonaguni.
   The history of the Yonaguni-ori dates back approximately 500 years. It is reckoned that the Yonaguni-ori was already being presented as tribute in the early C16th.
   Various forms of Yonaguni-ori include the figured ita-hana-ori shidati; the graceful Yonaguni-hana-ori; the flat woven dotati, used today in casual wear; and the corded kagannuboo. All are excellent examples of handicraft: their dyeing and weaving exemplify the culture and soul of Yonaguni.
   In 1987, the Ministry of International Trade and Industry designated Yonaguni-ori as a Traditional Handicraft.
   Yonaguni-ori is a weaving technique that has come down to us today having absorbed various techniques over time. It is a textile that reflects both tradition and history
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江戸更紗 Edosarasa Edo Sarasa Cloth

Jp En

Edo sarasa is a tasteful and exotic dyed cotton cloth. The patterns on sarasa are of southern flowers, birds and people depicted in rich colors, and came to Japan from countries such as India, Java and Persia.
   Sarasa was introduced to Japan through the southern Nanban trade at the end of the Muromachi period, and had begun to spread by the mid-Edo period.
   Edo sarasa has a Japanese sensibility in its colors and designs and uses patterns created through stencil printing. These Japanese patterns are stylized and exotic. Usually, around 30 stencils are used but up to 300 stencils are sometimes used! When many stencil designs are layered together, the sarasa appear profound and almost three-dimensional.
  Edo sarasa is a beautiful craft preserved by craftsmen today who have inherited these traditional techniques from the Edo period.
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"Nippon-kichi" leads you to places, people and things that reveal a certain Japanese aesthetic.

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