NIPPON Kichi - 日本吉

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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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笹ヶ尾石仏群 Sasagao-sekibutugun Sasagao Stone Buddhas

Jp En

The Sasagao Stone Buddha statues in Amagasemachi, Hita, Oita Prefecture, consist of as many as 100 statues of all sizes standing from 30cm tall to life-size, carefully positioned all over a small rocky hill. The taishido statue is in the center.

A rock stairway up the hill has been built along with a drinking fountain for those who need a rest from the climb up. The stone Buddha statues are all different in both size, shape and facial expression.

The moss-covered Jizo statues standing alone in the winter landscape suggest the subtlety of 'wabi-sabi'. Indeed, the Sasagao-sekibutsugun is a wonderful location that is not widely known, and where one's heart is always struck by the appearance of the statues quietly withstanding the harsh elements of nature.
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江戸くみひも Edokumihimo Edo Braiding

Jp En

Edo braiding is a tasteful and graceful Tokyo specialty.
   Japan makes extraordinarily sophisticated use of all kinds of threads.  Not only do the Japanese bind and tie things together with strings and thread, but they also can show fortune, sex and status by the way the threads are tied together, by the choice of color and by the arrangement of the knots.
   Braiding dates back to before the Edo period. It was originally imported from China or Korea. When the Shogunate was established in Edo, there was a demand for ceremonial clothing and therefore for braids. The Edo braid then developed a delicacy and a wabi-sabi quality (quiet simplicity).
   Edo braiding is applied to many things, such as the obi sash for kimonos, haori (short jackets) and other essentials for our daily lives.
   Braiding is also used to secure scrolls, on monks robes, on sashes worn by nobility, as decoration on traditional armory and on sword handles.
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"Nippon-kichi" leads you to places, people and things that reveal a certain Japanese aesthetic.

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