Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Some New Kokeshis

This summer Naoko and the girls went to Japan, and of course the trip included a kokeshi adventure. On 17 June Naoko hopped on the train to Uguisudani Station in downtown Tokyo to attend the 5th Shitaya Kokeshi Festival 第5回 下谷こけし祭り. The event was held at a cool shop called Hikimono Gangu Negishi 挽物玩具ねぎし which is owned by a kokeshi collector whom we know. Naoko knew about the festival thanks to a post card that came a few weeks before departing.
The back of the post card for the festival.
The front of the post card for the festival.
The platform sign at Uguisudani Station.
Unfortunately photography wasn't allowed inside the shop, but Naoko reported that it was a successful event with lots of people. She also saw some of our friends from the Tokyo Kokeshi Tomo no Kai, and was even interviewed for NHK TV (though Naoko didn't make the air -- oh well). Six kokeshi craftsmen were on hand selling their wonderful work, and Naoko brought nine pieces back to California as shown in the photo below. I wish I could have been there too.
Our nine new pieces: Seven kokeshis and two Darumas.
The craftsmen who came to Tokyo for the festival were Honma Naoko 本間直子さん, Niiyama Mayumi 新山真由美さん, Niiyama Yoshinori 新山吉紀さん, Onuma Hideaki 大沼秀顕さん, Abe Kunitoshi 阿部国, and Hiraga Teruyuki 平賀輝幸さん. I'll talk about of the kokeshis that Naoko bought in the next few blog posts.

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