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The work space at the Mino Paper Village in 2002. This was a warehouse that housed the five artists. Those large machines on the floor are heaters which helped heat up with the coldness of the place. It sounded like a jet engine. Coincidently they were taken from as high school as we were given smaller ones that really did not work. At the Mayor’s [Michimasa Ishikawa] visit to the studio, I bumped into him carrying a large canister of fuel and fidgeted trying the start the small heater. The next day, these were installed and the part of the open space to the upper floor were sectioned off with plastic so to keep the heat in.

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In Japanese culture, it is customary for guests to bring some small token. This may be a snack. The garbage bags you see here is evident of getting too much and being unable to manage with the surplus. Artists were also provided with bicycles so they could commute to and from their host homes.

open-house This was taken on the day of an open house, the public was invited to see what types of art were being made using washi paper. Minopaper

Richard Bolai ©2008

Richard Bolai [Feinin]

I am a trained Bookbinder which in 2002, I went on a three month residency relating to Washi paper making. According to the Japan Foundation, the Mino Paper Village is considered one of the most sort after residencies offered in japan. This website is aimed to give an incite of it but also as an appreciation of the beauty of washi. The Mino Paper Project's focus is to export the craft of washi paper internationally, but also it learns from artists many other ways the paper may be used

Useful links on Mino Paper Village

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All photographs and accompanying articles appearing on site are the exclusive property of Richard Bolai © 2008 All Rights Reserved.