We toured a number of amazing museums and studios on our trip. I don’t have room here to do them all justice, but I just have to share a bit and I will include links for you to explore these unique places on your own.
To begin with, our interpreter guide, Izumi, was amazing.
Her English is very good, her knowledge of each destination is great, and she has a delightful sense of humor.
She kept everything running smoothly and made the trip a joy!
Our first stop was the Tokyo National Museum. It had a fascinating display of vintage kimonos, created with a number of different methods.
This detail photo highlights some shibori dyeing (the white spots surrounded by indigo) and embroidery:
On our way to Mt. Fugi we stopped along Lake Kawaguchi and had the pleasure of visiting the Kwaguchiko Muse Museum where beautiful and distinctive dolls made by Japanese doll artist Yuki Atae are on display. It was a cloudy day and the mountain was not visible, but I love this photo of the group in front of the lake.
We were only allowed to photograph one of the artist’s creations:
but if you’d like to see more (and I highly recommend it), click here to visit the museum’s webpage. Many of the dolls are featured in the changing slideshow of photographs at the top of the page.
From there we went to one of my favorite stops on the trip – the Itchiku Kuboto Art Museum. It is housed among the foothills of Mt. Fugi in structures that enhance the landscape and invite one in.
Itchiku Kuboto was a craftsman who created larger than life kimonos with incredible artistry. Once again, we were not allowed to photograph his work, but I found many of these beautiful pieces on the web. Click here for a visual feast. By clicking on each kimono on the home page, more information will appear.
Some of us had tea in another building on the grounds. We of course removed our shoes, sat on cushions on the floor, and looked out on a captivating view of a winter waterfall. It was lovely.
After visiting these wonderful sites we were taken to our hotel for the night.
As we approached it we were disappointed to find Mt. Fugi continued to be hidden behind the clouds. We had a fascinating dinner that evening (to be featured in a future blog post 😊), and at dawn the following morning this was the view from my balcony:
We visited so many amazing sites that I’m finding they won’t fit into one post. Next week I’ll touch on the fiber art stops we made around Kyoto.