To many of us, Kintsugi is not a trendy wabisabi DIY craft project.
If you are graduating from "kintsugi kit", "1-hour experience workshops" or have been seeking information on authentic traditional methods, this is the place for you.
Here, you won't find romanticized philosophy, no life-coaching, no shortcuts, no starter kit and no substitutions. This hub is built and validated by lacquer artisans, kintsugi practitioners and instructors in Japan, for learners to get genuine information from the craftsman's perspective. We embrace kintsugi not because of the decorated crackline nor the symbolic wabi-sabi "life-lessons"; but the time, discipline and training that is required to learn and master the craft. We are not against changes, we just believe in using original and natural material.
We are aware there are lost-in-translations in the market. We saw serious learners paying premium for commodified kintsugi pieces, quick workshops, eye-candy packaged kits with insufficient tools or substituted material. We understand the desire for some advocates to procure proper material and tools.
With the many options in the marketplace for material and information, you own the decision in how to approach your kintsugi projects or collection.
We hope you find our information and effort beneficial to your learning and practicing, being miles away from Japan.
"That" Broken Bowl
How many times have you hear or read the generic story about a shogun sending an expensive broken bowl to China for repair and was returned with unsightly staples. The disgruntled shogun commanded something more pleasing, and thus started the Japan's development of a more refined and artistic repair method call Kintsugi?
THAT broken bowl has a name and a documented history.
The Bakohan bowl is recognized as Japan's National Treasure archived in Tokyo National Museum. It is an important piece of ceramics history of Japan. The bowl can be seen in the museum's digital archive here.
We hope this will debunk the misunderstanding and dismissing of the clamp-repair method and shed some light on the "mythical" broken bowl that got sent to China for repair. These "leech" clamps were appreciated as high-art BOTH in China as well as in Japan.
Image rights ©National Institutes for Cultural Heritage