Visitors Enjoy Good Old Days of Japan
• A big crowd was drawn to Ginza Holiday at the Midwest Buddhist Temple in Chicago’s Oldtown neighhood. The 59th Ginza Holiday took place from August 8 to 10, and the visitors enjoyed the temple’s unique festival food such as teriyaki chicken, sushi, noodles, spam musubi and more.
• Almost every aspect of Japanese culture was exhibited and demonstrated each day at the stage and inside the hall, so the visitors were entertained throughout the festival. On the stage, taiko drumming, kendo, judo, karate, aikido, Japanese classical dances and minyo folk dances, and others were performed. At the inside hall, bonsai plants by renowned Shigeo Ito, sumi-e by Linda Rozmus, ikebana by Misho Kai students, brush painting by Charlotte Fung Miller, Japanese bags and koi paintings by Jack Matsumoto and Amy Tsutsui, Japanese Touch of Glass by Amy Sakoda, and many more art forms were exhibited.
• Ginza Holiday also provides unique
shopping opportunities. Kimono dresses, Japanese flavored crafts and ornaments,
toys, potteries, and more.
• Nancy Torres, who lives near the temple,
brought international guests to Ginza Holiday. Rick Lyddon originally
from London and currently lives in Illinois. He said that he missed the
spam musubi because it was sold out. “We are going to another festival
in Roscoe Village, Chicago,” he added. Margaret Prichard and Gary Fray
came from Sydney, Australia.
• The Waza Artisans from Japan
• Bibi Ishikawa makes many kinds of ornaments
by using kofu, old kimono fabrics from Edo, Meiji, and early Show era.
The kofu is one of antique collection artifacts such as kakejiku (hanging
scroll) and tea utensil. Ishikawa’s crafts include miniature furniture
for dolls, kaishi paper holders, hair pins, hanging ornaments for girl’s
day and traditional cerebrating occasions, and many more.
• She started to make the ornaments when
her elder sister collected old Ichimatsu dolls from Edo and Meiji eras.
When she saw the old dolls, she wanted to make new kimono for them, but
only kimono fabric from those eras could fit the dolls. She made kimono
by using kofu and pondered what she could do with the leftover fabrics.
• Meisho Yamasaki was making figures in Tokyo such as kaiju, human body models, Pokemon like mascot characters after she graduated from art high school in Kyoto where she majored sculpture.
• She happened to read a book about doll’s kimono making published by Ishikawa’s sister and was fascinated by Ichimatsu dolls and their kimono. Six month later, she visited the doll museum and met Ishikawa, who introduced her to a doll making class taught by Master Kokan Fujimura.
• Fujimura soon recognized Meisho’s skills
and accepted her apprenticeship. She needed to learn about traditional
doll making materials, which required her four years to master. She became
an independent Ichimatsu doll maker with the name of Meisho about five
• The furll story is available in the Chicago Shimpo’s 2014, September 12th iss
Bibi Ishikawa, Kofu (antique kimono fabric) artist
Meisho Yamasaki, Ichimatsu doll maker
Ceramicist Eiji Kinoshita
Shigeo Ito, bonsai artist
Bibi Ishikawa’s handmade crafts by using kofu, old kimono clothes
MBT's special chicken teriyaki
From left, Nancy Torres, Margaret Prichard, Gary Flay, and Rick Lyddon