Handbook for the Appreciation of Japanese Traditional Crafts

The Japan Kōgei Association is pleased to be able to include on its website this English version of its Nihon Dentō Kōgei Kanshō no Tebiki (Handbook for the Appreciation of Japan Traditional Art Crafts). The Nihon Dentō Kōgei Kanshō no Tebiki was published in 1999 and the English translation was originally prepared in 2003 to celebrate the staging of the 50th Nihon Dentō Kōgeiten (Japan Traditional Art Crafts Exhibition).

While the 2003 English text uses ‘Crafts’ as a translation of the Japanese term工芸, in this introduction we have used the transliteration ‘Kōgei’ instead. The reason for this is that in 2013, when preparations were being made for the 60th Nihon Dentō Kōgeiten, it was decided that ‘Crafts’ was an inappropriate way of describing the types of work shown in the exhibition and that it should be replaced by the Japanese term ‘Kōgei’ or, when unavoidable, the English expression ‘Art Crafts’.

We very much hope that these English pages on our website will help foster a broad and global appreciation of Japan’s Traditional Kōgei.