Encounter with Sustainable Paper

Encounter with Sustainable Paper

I continued to experiment with how to feel more connected to nature.

In the summer of 2023, during a visit back to Shimane, I encountered the material that felt just right.

Sekishu Washi, a traditional craft paper born from nature, is a sustainable paper from the Iwami region in western Shimane Prefecture, with which I've been familiar since childhood.

During my elementary school years, I participated in Iwami Kagura, a traditional performing art, under the guidance of a Kagura master. There were few children involved in Iwami Kagura, so I often played the leading role. However, in the sixth grade, a child with a talent for dancing joined, and the master did not hesitate to change the lead role. The master's instruction became even more passionate. It was a good correction for me at the time, who had mistaken myself for having a talent in dancing. The master was strict but kind. Sekishu Washi was extensively used in such Iwami Kagura performances.

The Sekishu Washi used in Iwami Kagura is said to be the strongest paper in Japan, even among Sekishu Washi, known for its thickness and strength. It's the paper that makes me feel the most connected to nature.

I thought that by creating paintings with this paper, I could feel even closer to nature! I tried making the paper myself through self-study and participating in workshops in Tokyo.

Realizing it wasn't as easy as just getting an idea and making it happen, I decided to call the Shimane city office for advice.