Okinawa Tourism Information:YouCanLearnAboutOkinawanTraditionalCraftinGinza!

You Can Learn About Okinawan Traditional Craft in Ginza!

post : 2014.09.04 18:00

From tomorrow, Friday, September 5, “The 21st Okinawa Industrial Arts Fureai Square” will be held at Jiji Press Hall in Ginza, Tokyo this year again, with a theme of “Deliver the Traditional Craft from Southern Land”

This event has been held as a place for handicraft workers and users to get to know each other, to encourage social interaction and understanding as well as to tell the convenience of using craft products in daily living and to suggest how to use them.

Okinwan traditional crafts were created during 14th Century to 16th Century when the Ryukyu Kingdom acquired various technique and skills from mainland Japan, China, and South East Asian countries through overseas trading and the royal government uniquely developed them into its own style.  Fifteen unions from Okinawa participate in this event.

Tsuboya Ware, which started in 1682 when the Chibana Kiln, Wakuta Kiln, and Takaraguchi Kiln were moved and integrated in Tsuboya, and has been supporting Okinawan yachimun (pottery) till present.

Ryukyu Bingata was originated in the 15th Century as the only traditional dyeing product in Okinawa.  It is characterized by its bright-colored patterns that are hand-dyed with botanical dyestuffs.    

In addition, Ryukyu Lacquer ware whose vividness of vermillion red that is unlike any other in the world, and sanshin (three-stringed instrument), which became spread in the world as a unique Okinawan instrument along with traditional performing arts.

As for textile fabrics, you can find quality products including a nationally-designated intangible important cultural property “Bashoufu in Kijoka,” “Yomitanzan Hana Ori,” “Yomitanzan Minsa,” “Shuri Ori,” “Ryukyu Gasuri,” “Miyako Jofu,” “Yaeyama Jofu,” “Yaeyama Minsa,” “Kumejima Tsumugi,” “Chibana Hana Ori,””Yonaguni Ori.”

“Uji-zome Dyeing,” which always impresses us with its bright green created by dyestuff from sugarcane leaves, was developed as a new specialty product by Tomigusuku City in the south of mainland Okinawa.   This dyeing product has been expected to contribute in the future local revitalization.

And on top of that, Ryukyu Glassware has been popular as souvenir products.  Each of the art works gives us resonance and diversity of Okinawan culture and tradition and touch a string in our heart. 

Not only from exhibits of theses craft products, but also you can actually learn the traditional skills from demonstration on weaving and making thread as well as experience programs for dyeing and weaving, shisa (guardian lion dog) doll making, etc.

In addition, lectures from each place of origin of the art works are conducted.

For these 3 days, the sanshin mini live performance will be held twice each day, so please do not miss it!  As a special plan, the exhibition has full of events for 3 days such as photographing service by “Utsukushii kimono (Beautiful Kimono)” (HEARST Fujingaho Co., Ltd.), a lecture on “Dyeing Fabrics in Okinawa,” a lecture by the president Rika Yajima of aeru Co., Ltd., a charity auction, etc.

It is a valuable opportunity to learn about these many Okinawan crafts at once.
If you have no chance to come to Okinawa, please come to the exhibition to get familiar with Okinawan traditional art.

The 21st Okinawa Industrial Arts Fureai Square
“Deliver The Traditional Craft from Southern Land”

Date: Friday, September 5 to Sunday till September 7
Avenue: Jiji Press Hall (5-15-8 Ginza, Chuo Ward, Tokyo)
Hours: 10:00 to 18:00 (till 17:00 on Sunday, 7th)
Admission: Free
Hosted by Okinawa Industrial Arts Fureai Square Executive Committee, Okinawa Prefecture
For more details, please click here.
 (Please note: This website is written in Japanese.  So please ask your Japanese friend for help.)

Okinawa CLIP Editorial Department