In our blogs, we write about the lives, philosophies, and talents of those who make the beautiful handmade creations that can be found on Studio Kotokoto’s website. At the same time, the way these items are used by people in their daily lives are equally important to the story of these objects.
A couple of years ago, I invited a friend to my house for tea. It was a warm spring afternoon and the peach trees were in full bloom. When my friend arrived, she walked in with a handful of peach flowers and a slightly distressed look on her face. “I snagged my car into one of your tree branches and these flowers fell”, she apologetically explained. My friend walked into my kitchen and found a small hand-pinched plate, filled it with water, and floated the flowers on it.
I remember vividly how this innocuous incident moved me. On the one hand there was this simple hand-pinched plate and on the other the flowers. But when my friend put these two things together so naturally and unpretentiously, they were in a beautiful harmony.
Everyday episodes such as this remind us that it is the boundless creativity of users that make the objects come to life. In our interactions with people, we have found that handcrafted items are used with great imagination and in sometimes surprising ways. These uses are often spontaneous, casual, and full of warmth and they forge a special connection between the artist and the user.
We created a page called Mingei in Everyday Life that can be accessed by clicking on the kettle symbol on the bottom right hand corner of our homepage. This is where we share pictures that are sent in from users showing how they use their handmade items.
We would be delighted to receive contributions from you to share with us your imaginative ways of using Mingei in your everyday life. Your stories will illuminate the special unspoken bond that connects you with the makers of these beautiful and functional objects that you hold in your hand. You can write us or send a photograph to info (at) studiokotokoto.com