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2013 Tiffany Foundation Award

Congratulations to the 2013 recipients of the Tiffany Foundation Award for the Preservation of Japanese Traditional Arts and Culture in Contemporary Society for their exemplary work preserving Japanese traditional arts at the national and regional community levels.

More on the 2013 recipients: Two Groups Honored at the 6th Annual Tiffany Award Ceremony in New York




TAISHO AWARD
For organizations that are nationally recognized and expected to introduce revolutionary or innovative elements to their field

Association for the Promotion of Ipponsugi Street


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Noren curtains are the long curtains that sometimes hang in the entrances to restaurants and traditional Japanese rooms. In Nanao City, Ishikawa Prefecture, the local tradition of hanayome noren (bride’s noren) dates back to the Edo Period, according to which a special noren is made for a bride using the traditional kaga yuzen technique. The noren is hung in the doorway that leads to the butsuma (a small room or vestibule that holds sacred objects) for the bride to walk through, a ritual that symbolizes that the bride is welcomed into her new family. The tradition continues today, and beautiful noren are still made for brides, but they are often stored away without much appreciation outside of the family.

ipponsugi2Ipponsugi Street is a commercial district in the city of Nanao that is known for its traditional Japanese products. The Association for the Promotion of Ipponsugi Street organizes an annual exhibition displaying hanayome noren in local stores and residences, which has grown into a major event that attracts large crowds. Every year, around Mother's Day, approximately 50 businesses and homes on Ipponsugi-dori Street display nearly 150 hanayome noren. The event opens with a traditional bridal procession, and “story telling booths” are set up and staffed with residents that introduce local culture and lifestyles. The town also publishes pamphlets that relate residents’ stories about their hanayome noren. In 2007, a special exhibition of hanayome noren was also held in the city of Nagoya.


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SHINKOSHO AWARD
For organizations recognized at the community level as having great potential and/or organizations that have produced
exemplary results in their region

ENVISI


ENVISI1ENVISI has been engaged in various art projects in Minamisanriku to revitalize the community since 2009. The most notable event was the “kiriko” exhibit, which came about in collaboration with local residents. Kiriko is a paper-cutting craft that applies unique techniques and designs that are passed down as a tradition in local shrines. In the exhibit, kiriko artwork was displayed in front of shops and houses on the main street that stretches out from the train station. The project inspired local residents and helped them appreciate what their community could offer. Their activities came to have even more significance after Minamisanriku was hit by the devastating earthquake and tsunami in March 2011. As one of the hardest-hit areas, the town lost 70 percent of its buildings and many of its residents. ENVISI resumed its work soon after the disaster, first by distributing food and other emergency supplies.
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Today the group is engaged in various art projects to support the people of Minamisanriku. One such project is another kiriko exhibit, in which artists interview local residents about their memories, experiences, and hopes, and design kiriko to tell their stories. The organization is also engaged in children’s projects, working with local schools and hosting workshops in which children create their own songs to tell their stories.



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