Okinawa Tourism Information:PotterKimieAsato/the1stvolume

Potter Kimie Asato / the 1st volume

post : 2016.11.05 19:00

When I first met Ms. Kimie Asato, the potter, I thought she is a person like sunshine. She was warm and friendly, and her smile had a power to embrace everybody.  

Most of Kimie’s works look absolutely natural and beautiful. Also her dishes with arabesque pattern attract people in and out of Okinawa. I asked her about her passion that she put into the dishes. 

Inside of the shop of Sinseitoubou

I was attracted to nife arabesque series of dishes made by you when I saw them for the first time. I remember when I took and gazed at them at that time. You have been making them for nearly 20 years, and can you tell me how you started making them?

These are the dishes with arabesque pattern, and I started making them when I decided to marry my husband and manage Sinseitoubou together.

It is now known as “nife arabesque” after collaborating with Yuimaru Okinawa, but it was “Cobalt Blue” at first.

Did you like arabesque pattern originally?

I made arabesque pattern of dishes when I majored in crafts at Okinawa Prefectural University of Arts, and also after graduated.

I like the pattern. However, on the other hand, it was easy for me to work on and I was interested in other techniques then.

So, I wasn’t really into making only this type of dishes. When I think back, the pattern was not good at that time.

While you were seeking your own style, you started to get down making dishes when you worked on your own.

That’s correct. I was making many types of dishes at first, and then narrowed down little by little, and now I am mainly focusing on these dishes because I get many orders from customers. 

nife arabesque series

I feel the strength of the blue sky and the ocean of Okinawa from the blue color of nife series.

There is various shade of blue. I wanted to express the blueness of bright and fresh atmosphere in Okinawa. 

This clear white adds spice to blue. 

There are many concrete white housings around here, aren’t there? So my image of Okinawa is bright blue pops up in white. I express its image with the contrast of blue and white.

I chose cool and breezy white to spice up blue. 

The pattern seems natural.

It is flower arabesque pattern with vines.

So, are they flowers? I thought they were feathers… I have an image that southern wind blows in the wide blue sky, and wings are floating lightly. The dots look like splash of the ocean. 

These dots are actually vines and fruits lol but that image sounds good.

Thank you very much. 

I used to walk Shuri when I was a student. For example, there were many woods around Sueyoshi-gu Shrine, right? And I heard a sound when the wind blew. 

Oh, a rustling of leaves.

That sounds good, doesn’t it? I like the silence after rustling. When I look up the sky between leaves, I see the blue sky clearly while the sun is scorching.

Like the sound or the color, a strong contrast which is hidden here and there is my ideal scenery. 

There is a contrast between blue and white at summer beach. The blue sky which can be sucked into and white cumulonimbus cloud. Sparkling beaches and white sands.

And blue and green are dark, and flowers are colorful, aren’t they? Or should I say healthy? I don’t see the image of fragile in Okinawa. They are all robust, healthy, and bold. I express all of those images into the arabesque pattern.

Then they connect to the dynamic painting, do they?

When you take a look at the pattern closely, you can recognize that it is the traditional chrysanthemum arabesque pattern. Also, I added my style and translated it into my style. Thick parts are thick, and thin parts are painted with quick brush strokes. These are also contrast to me. 

I think it reflects your naturalness. There is not much space, blue spreads all over the dish, and that is what it is good about.

Currently nife series turned out as a popular series, and Kimie’s memorable scenery of Okinawa is reflected on the dishes.

I will introduce dark brown series for the 2nd volume! This series also features the same arabesque pattern but maintain a calm atmosphere. 

dark brown series

To be continued…


Sinseitoubou *a complex with a shop 
Address: 260-6 Maji, Naha City
Tel: 098‐851‐9288 
Business hours: 9:00 – 18:00
Closed: Thu (inquire for Sat, Sun, and Japanese holidays) 

◇ The list of stores where everybody can purchase nife arabesque series 

Address: 2-7-15 Makishi, Naha City
Tel: 098‐866‐2501
Business hours: 14:00-19:00 
Closed: Sun

◇ nife arabesque series *online store 

Okinawa CLIP photo writer Akiko Ono