Ryukyuan indigo dyeing introduced at Japan Festival Paris 

Ryukyuan indigo dyeing introduced at Japan Festival Paris 

Masanao Shiroma (left) and his assistant Yoshiko Nishihira displayed Okinawan traditional crafts for sale at the Japan Festival held in April, at the Jardin d'Acclimatation in the suburbs of Paris.


April 30, 2012 Yoko Oshiro, Correspondent of Ryukyu Shimpo

Jardin d’Acclimatation is a park located in the Boulogne Forest on the outskirts of Paris. Peacocks and other birds abound in a mixture of a natural and amusement park seldom seen in Japan.

A Japan Festival was held at the Jardin d’Acclimatation from April 7 to May 8. The diverse range of products and art crafts from all over Japan displayed in a booth designed by a budding architect attracted great attention.

Masanao Shiroma, Ryukyuan dyeing artist and representative of the factory Aikaze participated in the event from April 7 to 20 and put his creations up for sale.
To begin with, he wondered if people would really be interested in his works because they would be too busy enjoying themselves in the amusement park, but his concerns turned out to be groundless. Shiroma’s beautiful indigo dyeing attracted many visitors.

He explained that he avoided using chemical dyes and only used natural dye compounds in his work, visitors were also impressed and the works sold well in the booth. Visitors spent much more than they would have expected on such an outing but seemed very happy with the purchases they made.

A resident of Paris, said, “I was looking for a housewarming gift for my friend and I found some place mats in Shiroma’s booth. Okinawan traditional patterns are beautiful and I think they will make an excellent gift. I’m sure that my friend will really like them.”

The festival lasted for a month until May 8, with the park infused with a Japanese atmosphere by the many events held every day.

(English translation by T&CT, Shinako Oyakawa and Mark Ealey)

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