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This content is taken from the Keio University's online course, The Art of Washi Paper in Japanese Rare Books. Join the course to learn more.

Skip to 0 minutes and 2 seconds Dr. Shiroto, I must say, there is such a wide variety of different materials and techniques to make washi. Absolutely. What I have explained so far is just the basic process. There are literally countless varieties. But what is that? This is a calligraphy album (known as kohitsu tekagami, or, “calligraphy mirrors”), a collection of samples of beautiful writing taken from various books. It’s a very rare miniature example entitled Kotekagami (Old Calligraphy Mirror). It contains about 100 different samples from the 8th to the 16th century. Even at a quick glance, you can see the great variety of papers that it includes. Indeed. Besides white paper, there is color paper, paper decorated with gold or silver.

Skip to 0 minutes and 52 seconds Our theme for Week 2 is decorated papers and we will study various different decoration methods using actual period examples.

Introduction to Week 2

Let’s join Professor Sasaki and Dr. Shiroto and delve deeper into the fascinating world of washi paper from Keio University’s Institute of Oriental Classics.

In the video, Prof. Sasaki introduces Kohitsu Tekagami.

The PDF version of the course handout for Week 2 are available in the DOWNLOADS section below. Please check them out!

A book introduced in the video

Take a closer look at the books introduced in the course

As mentioned in Step 1.1, you can see the information and images of the book in larger size by clicking the links marked “Click to see the image and information”. The link allows you to take a closer look at a selected book.

As shown in the image below, (after you go to the link) by clicking the section “Click to Zoom image”, you can view the books in higher resolution image.

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This video is from the free online course:

The Art of Washi Paper in Japanese Rare Books

Keio University