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Kintsugi: Broken Japanese vase that has been repaired.  Source: Margineanu / Adobe Stock.

Embracing Imperfection: The Artistry of Kintsugi (Video)


In the realm of pottery, there exists an extraordinary Japanese art form that transforms broken fragments into something even more beautiful. This mesmerizing practice, known as "kintsugi," embraces the inevitability of objects shattering as they take shape. It doesn't view breakage as a flaw but rather as an opportunity for renewal and rebirth. Mastering this delicate technique requires years of dedication and a deep appreciation for imperfection. In Kyoto, an artisan named Hiroshi Kawai has spent four and a half decades immersed in this world, utilizing a combination of urushi lacquer and gold to mend and embellish shattered objects.

By adorning mended pieces with gold, they not only regain functionality but also acquire a special aura, prolonging their existence and celebrating their history. Kawai's journey is a testament to the deep connection between the Japanese people, their reverence for nature, and the art of kintsugi. It is a profound exploration of how the meticulous repair of broken pottery mirrors our own journey of healing and resilience.

Top image: Kintsugi: Broken Japanese vase that has been repaired.  Source: Margineanu / Adobe Stock.

By Robbie Mitchell

Robbie Mitchell's picture


I’m a graduate of History and Literature from The University of Manchester in England and a total history geek. Since a young age, I’ve been obsessed with history. The weirder the better. I spend my days working as a freelance... Read More

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