News & Special Events

KASURI

A WONDROUS WEAVE
THEN..... NOW

Mingei Australia invites you to an exhibition of:

Beautiful cloths, lighting & furnishing
Mary Taguchi

Exhibition opens 2pm Saturday 2 September 
at Altenburg & Co, Braidwood NSW

Exhibition continues until 9 October, 2017

Altenburg & Co

104 Wallace St Braidwood NSW, 02 48422545
10 - 4pm Friday to Sunday

Drawing from Mary’s textile collection of historical Japanese cottons, some pieces will be specially available as part of an upcoming exhibition at Altenburg and Co in Braidwood NSW.

This exhibition will be showing both old and new indigo dyed woven kasuri.

“I never cease to admire the incredible work involved in the making of this wondrous weave. The old cloths tell the story of villagers who tie and dye threads into intricate patterns before weaving the cloths needed for life, as clothing, as bedding. The new cloths are all from my contact with a present day Japanese pedlar, and form the seating on old dining chairs found in an Australian country town.”

Coupled with the superb sculptured paper lighting of the remarkable Isamu Noguchi (1904-1988), the exhibition will be a joy for anyone with interests in indigo, cotton and paper and the timeless crafts of humble people.

Stories of Cloth and Clay for the Everyday

Old and new Sakiori Textiles by Mingei Australia
Ceramics by Sandy Lockwood

Exhibition continues until 10 October, 2016

Mary Taguchi: Cloth
Sandy Lockwood: Clay

Altenburg & Co

104 Wallace Street, Braidwood, NSW (02) 4842 2545

SAKIORI, ‘torn woven’

An exhibition of beautiful, textured cotton cloths derived from early trading routes along the northern coast of Japan.

Originally woven with hemp and torn cotton strips, Mary Taguchi’s collection has stunning old and new sakiori cloths, for your table, your furniture.

You are invited to an exhibition and sale of:

OLD AND NEWSAKIORI TEXTILES FROM MINGEI AUSTRALIA

CERAMICS BY PRUE VENABLES

Japanese Prints from the Collection of David Button

21 October to 21 November 2015

Rathdowne Galleries

JOSHUA McCLELLAND PRINT ROOM & RATHDOWNE GALLERIES

310 Rathdowne Street, Carlton North, 3054

Gallery Hours:  Tuesday to Friday 11 – 6.  Saturday 12 – 5.

Tel: 03 9347 1854 E:
art@rathdownegalleries.com.au

Mingei Store House

invites you to an exotic collection of new tenugui and bowls and to celebrate the year with a glass of prosecco

Friday 12 December 2014
5pm - 8pm

Village Square Bungendore NSW

Mary Taguchi’s Timeless Much-Loved Work With Japanese Indigo Dyed Cottons Is Coming To Melbourne

Tuesday 8 April – Saturday 26 April 2014

Inspired by the aesthetic of Japan, sturdy country clothing and the unusual narrow bolts of cotton cloth, Mary combines traditional and contemporary design to produce beautiful, functional, elegant garments from her Mingei Australia studio.

You are invited to the first exhibition and sale of these unique shirts and jackets in conjunction with the exhibition of Japanese prints at Joshua McClelland Print Room & Rathdowne Galleries.

Rathdowne Galleries

JOSHUA McCLELLAND PRINT ROOM & RATHDOWNE GALLERIES

310 Rathdowne Street, Carlton North, 3054

Gallery Hours:  Tuesday to Friday 11 – 6.  Saturday 12 – 5.
Sunday 13 April only 12 – 5.  Closed over Easter Break.

Tel: 03 9347 1854 E:
art@rathdownegalleries.com.au

A special exhibition of sakiori and kogin will be set up in the Mingei Store House from 4-28 JULY 2013

You’ll love it!

Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday
10.00am - 5.00pm

NEWSLETTER #3 June 2013

Having recently returned from a week in Japan, Mary Taguchi writes:

For years I have wanted to be in Tohoku, the far north of Japan, seeking the cloths and studio workplaces of that region. The history has drawn me there, for in the very cold north, where cotton wouldn’t grow, Tohoku people originally wove the inner bark of woody plants such as hemp and wisteria. It was trading ships from Osaka that brought remnants of used cotton clothing and so the idea of tearing and weaving these cloths came into existence. This is what is called sakiori - literally “tear and weave”. This links with the frugal Japanese notion of not wasting perfectly good things; in the case of fabrics, by giving them a second life through re-weaving and embraced by a word used from each person’s early childhood - “That’s mottainai” - That’s wasteful.

Sakiori cloths could clearly be used for table covers in the winter, for belts/obi, for carry bags and for clothing such as vests and aprons.

With quite some preparation in hand, we took fast trains to the north, continuing in local buses to specific places. Although the prime time of Spring, it was very cold, then sleet and snow. It was good that the weather was like this, to understand better the sakiori story and the reason for the use of bright colours in weaving.. . . vibrant colours for relief from the cold, snowy white.

Seeing the cloths torn into narrow strips, the winding of these into small balls called hesomaki, the weaving on traditional strap looms and the make-up of the cloths into useful articles was as good as I ever wanted. I could immediately purchase table runners, bags and purses, and have cushion orders underway - the Mingei Store House is a perfect place for this work and I will love working with these happy, inspiring people.

Connecting to the requirements for warm clothing in Japan’s north is the decorative stitch, kogin. I needed to see this in operation, having discovered it many years ago on the clothing of actors in Akira Kurosawa’s film, ‘Dreams’. It is a clever stitch, always horizontal, with the ability to wed layers of cloth together as reinforcement and hence make warm garments. Because of being a horizontal stitch, hundreds of patterns of diamonds have been produced over hundreds of years. Another train, another bus and another town away, revealed the weaving, dyeing, cutting of cloth, stitching and make up of goods. Kogin stitched goods are now in the Mingei Store House and again, we have delightful people to work with from now on.

NEWSLETTER #2 November 2012

<em>Sakiori</em>
  • <em>Sakiori</em>
  • Table Napkins (set of 6) $66
  • Hats from $55
  • Set of 4 cups $70
  • Scarves from $75
  • Sakiori purses from $28
  • Set of 2 cups $50
  • Set of 2 bowls $66

Mingei Store House is full of wonderful purses, bags, table napkins, runners, scarves, hats and shirts for summer, for Christmas!  Mary has been away again, visiting her dyer, weaver friends in the Japan Alps and in coastal villages and has since been busy getting everything in place in the Store House, Bungendore. There are some truly beautiful scarves from a master shibori dyer from Kyoto.

“I look for a Japan that can be hidden in the many folds of its culture and subcultures, hoping that this assists treasures to survive and flourish. I carefully choose each and every piece, be it a small coin purse or bolt of fabric, picturing it 'at home' in the warmth of the Store House.”

Sakiori, the weaving of spent cloth, is captivating me and I have quite a collection in the Store House... as runners, purses, table centres. There is a remarkable energy in these handmade articles made from fibres used by one person after another through decades.

Sandy has fired charming small pots, plates and bowls, beautifully boxed for easy gift-giving.

 

 

NEWSLETTER # 1 JUNE 2012

A story of Japan in June

Japan last week! A fleeting trip to the south of Japan is all Mary needs to be excited by her finds... and this time a planned meeting with an indigo peddler, the son of a former indigo merchant Mary had come across some years ago. Each time Mary is back in Japan it is working on the next weaves of traditional kasuri patterns, scurrying around villages in the nearby mountains or chasing a recent hint of a contact. “It is quite wonderful that in 12 hours you can be ensconced in another world, eating hot roasted chestnuts in a mountain village, with the sound of tumbling water, shimmering rice paddy fields and the gentle nature of my craftsmen friends.

The peddler was a special point for this trip... it was sheer luck that he was to be in the Kyoto area when Mary was there. His van is large so that he can sleep in it when travelling and fill it with treasures from weavers’ and dyers’ workshops all over the country. Lengths of bold indigo, kasuri off cuts from different studios, woven scarves from the elders of one particular family are packed into cardboard boxes.

“So obviously fresh from the indigo vat, fresh from the loom, you can easily see the cloths as cushions, table mats, jackets and shirts. The patterns are rarely repeated, they will last forever, they are impossible to resist.”

The tradition of indigo peddling dates back many centuries, a time honoured system of distribution to country farming families requiring the strong, useful indigo dyed cloth.

“I so love being part of this tradition and once again I am indebted to the places my life has taken me.”

Do come to the Mingei Store House soon, while stocks last. Boxes of cloths have just arrived and some will certainly be on display before they are made into jackets, shirts and more.

Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday from 10 - 5. 

New Ceramics

Also in June, Sandy Lockwood had a successful wood firing with a series of stunning cobalt blue and white mugs and bowls.

Serendipitously, at the same time Mary was working on a scarf that turned out to be the perfect partner for Sandy's ceramics.

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