Artist of LE KOOGEI
Kanki Tsukayama ＜Chatan Takezaiku＞
“Certified Craftsman of Okinawa for Basket Weaving”
The original designer who developed the LE KOOGEI prototype
3 generations of bamboo work from his grandfather. Tsukayama has been helping his father since he was in elementary school and is a Certified Craftsman of Okinawa. He is currently the only person in the Prefecture who earns a living with bamboo work.
After many years of apprenticeship, he established his own business in 1989, the first year of Heisei Period in Japan. Having thoroughly inherited the fundamental craftsmanship, he not only makes Okinawa’s traditional Baki (strainer), Teal (basket) but in recent years he is creating flower vase and traditional dance props. At the National Tree Planting Festival held in Okinawa in 1993, he had the honor of making the “baskets for seedlings” used by the Emperor and Empress of Japan.
Weaved Basket Instructor/Author
The product developer who brought the ideal line to life
1984 Begins basket making craft
Earned Instructor qualification from Yasuko Yoshiyasu Rattan Craft Educational Center
Earned Master level qualification from Masakatsu Hasegawa
2002 Began tenure at the Sousai Kai Organization for Arts by the General Public
2016 Since 2016, Hiroko has been organizing Hiroko Hagiwara Group Exhibition
2018-March Appointed as Basket Weaving Director for “LE KOOGEI” and has been engaged in development of baskets.
2018 Received the Minister of Education Award at the 38th Sousai Exhibition
Seiitiro Inamine < Kizuna Glass Workshop >
Ryukyu glass is a revived waste glass made by the human hands in a purposely unrefined manner while retaining its simple natural colors. The warm texture is similar to pottery and the technique of “bubble glass” especially enhances the feel.
The innovative method called Domon-yaki is performed by pouring hot glass into Okinawan clay mixed with water, which creates design patterns on the surface. Depending on how thick or thin the clay, or the temperature of glass, various expressions come alive. He is constantly engaged in innovative methods to pursue new figurative sensibilities. The once discarded glass wears a perplexed expression upon encountering the innovative method and unique sensibility which transformed the glass to the height of beauty never achieved before.
In 1995, he joined his father Seikiti Inamine’s Blow Glass Studio called “Niji”. Ever since then, Seiitiro has won many awards at Okiten (art exhibition in Okinawa) and other Traditional Art Crafts Exhibitions. He started his own Ryukyu Glass Studio named “Kizuna” in 2015.
Naoki Kaneshi < Shizuku Glass Studio >
Naoki Kaneshi “Ryukyu Glass”
One shizoku(Japanese word for a dew or water drop) to thank family/colleagues/and friends. One shizoku to thank customers and those who came before us that created Ryukyu Glass and developed it into what it is today. One shizoku for the nature of Okinawa.
The glasses from Shizuku Ryukyu Glass Studio are made with many thanks.
While inheriting the tradition, we will continue to engage in progressive glass making and would like to drop a shizoku for you as well.＊
Takae Kaneshi < Shizuku Glass Studio >
Takae Kaneshi “Tonbotama”
1977 Born in Yomitason village 2002 Joined blow glass studio “Takumi”, began creating burner works.
2006 Joined Ryukyu Glass Studio “Teida”.
2007 Selected by Okiten exhibition. Hosted a studio exhibition, “Teidano Kagayaki” at the Ryubo Art Salon
2008 Selected by Okiten Exhibition
2009 Selected by Okinawa Traditional Arts and Crafts Public Contribution Exhibition
2010 Selected by Okiten Exhibition
2012 Established Tonbotama Studio ta-ma.
Selected Arts and Crafts Public Contribution Exhibition.
2014 Established “Shizuku” Ryukyu Glass Studio together with her husband in Yomitason Village.
Sachiko Takahashi ＜Hanaori Minsa - Mineya＞
“The founding Weaver of Ishigaki Island”
Hanaori (flower weave) had been actively woven in Okinawa as a protective cloth for safe travels in the past, and it exists today in the traditional performing arts. History can be observed in the colors and patterns on the cloth ribs, hanaori and vertical stripes. It reminds us of weave patterns from the far south. The bi-colored warp is twilled, and the yarn is scooped when woven. Hanaori has a unique weaving method where the warp is two colors and the weft are seen on the reverse side, creating a unique cloth surface while having different expression on each side. In the shadow of Yeyeyama-jofu, hemp cloth from, which prospered greatly, Hanori saw its decline for a long while, but in 1989, our president “Sachiko Takamine” coined the name “Hanaori Minsa” while incorporating the weaving method of Hanaori to make the Minsa cloth. Even today, she continues her quest for Hanaori method from the long past while continuing to propose hand woven cloth that is sustained within the balance of tradition and creation and in our modern life.