Hello, I am Yuki, an owner of the Japanese bonsai pots online store YUKIMONO.
Kintsugi is a Japanese traditional technique for repairing broken ceramic with natural lacquer and gold or silver. A few months ago, I participated in a Kintsugi workshop that was held 7~8 times over 4 months and I repaired my broken bonsai pots.
|knead natural lacquer|
Though it takes a very long time (at least a few months!), and it is highly difficult for me, I really enjoyed the repair process and was very impressed by this traditional technique.
This is one of the bonsai pots I repaired. It had a chip in the edge.
Last year, right after I bought it, the pot was hit inadvertently and got damaged. That was very unfortunate for me. I couldn’t throw it away, and left it as it was.
|Put brokes pieces|
My broken pot was not only repaired, but also transformed into a new pot with a beautiful silver pattern. I think that’s the charm of Kintsugi, and represents what exactly Kintsugi is.
It is said that this technique developed with the tea ceremony in the Muromachi era (1338~1573). According to some sources, masters of the tea ceremony in this era appreciated the repaired crack with gold on the tea bowl as the scenery of somewhere when they had the tea ceremony. They found beauty in the crack on the broken pot. That view made Kintsugi not only a repairing technique, but also a way of art.
Instead of Kintsugi with natural lacquer, a new repairing technique has begun to be used recently. It is also called Kintsugi, and it uses synthetic lacquer, (actually it isn’t lacquer, but a kind of paint), to repair ceramic. As it doesn’t use natural lacquer, the new Kintsugi is easier and doesn’t take as much time as the real Kintusgi, however, the final condition is more sophisticated and beautiful with the real Kintsugi I believe.