Mr. Mishima Ichiro on the left with local specialist Mr. Takuji Nakamura
Master Bamboo Craftsman from Kyoto Builds a New Fence at the Hammond
Thanks to the generosity of Japan Foundation and a partnership with the North American Japanese Garden Association (NAJGA), the Hammond Museum and Japanese Stroll Garden now has a new bamboo screen built by master Kyoto craftsman Mishima Ichiro. Mr. Mishima, who has practiced his craft for 52 years, is one of the two highest ranking bamboo weaving craftsmen in Japan. Currently, he is vice director of the Kyoto Bamboo Cooperative Association and an instructor at the Kyoto Traditional Crafts College. He also holds the highest-ranking certificate in henso (a bamboo weaving technique), wakirumi (a traditional Japanese art style that uses thin bamboo to create pine trees and gourds), and marutake (which utilizes the round shape of the bamboo to produce products such as flower vases and bamboo fences).
In order to promote the practice of master craftsmanship of Japanese traditional arts in the United States, NAJGA arranged for Mr. Mishima to conduct workshops in 5 locations in August 2023. Accompanying Mr. Mishima was Matsunaga Takaaki, founder of Japanese Garden TV on YouTube. Through his channel, Mr. Matsunaga documents the process of creating Japanese gardens by sharing footage from real garden construction projects in order to preserve the traditions for future generations.
Mr. Mishima and Mr. Matsunaga worked at the Hammond on Monday, August 21 st to replace the slats of a decorative screen that stands next to the Tea Hut. Using strips of bamboo fabricated in and shipped from Kyoto, the team disassembled the old and dilapidated fence and replaced it with a new one, using proper traditional techniques and materials.