Friday, September 30, 2016

Kintsugi and the Beauty in Broken Things

These wood-fired cups were made by a talented Taipei-based pottery artist, Mr. Emilio Jose Del Pozo, and they were fired in a kiln at the ceramics museum in Yingge.  Alas, two of them broke in the process, leaving only one fully intact.  Kindly, Mr. Del Pozo offered to repair the broken ones by kintsugi (金継ぎ) method using gold(1), and the results are simply beautiful.

There is something profound about the art of kintsugi beyond mere aesthetics alone, especially in this day and age of disposable consumerism.  For me and my family, it resonates rather deeply as we are currently taking care of a terminally ill parent.  Sometimes, without rhyme or reason, people and things get broken regardless of how attentive and careful we conduct ourselves.  Continuing to love and care for those that are broken, I think, is one of the meanings of kintsugi itself.

Mr. Emilio Jose Del Pozo is a pottery artist and the proprietor of The Jade Leaf in Taipei (


1. Kintsugi can also be done with pure silver and platinum, in addition to gold.

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