Kimono making has a long and enduring history in Japan. The traditional art still exists today. Whereas this was everyday wear back then, today, the kimono is only worn during a special occasion.
The Kimono is one of the iconic cultural symbols of Japan. Kimonos are one of the backbones of the country that helped defined the Japanese way of living. However, today it is experiencing a crisis. Not many people continue the artistic tradition as only a few people are left who know the traditional kimono art making. Forgetting this part of the culture does not bode well for the future generations.
Kimonos have defined Japan’s culture for a long time. The traditional wear defines a critical piece of the Japanese identity, and it helps generations of people to deepen their appreciation of their country’s roots. It reminds them that they are part of a broader history that defines who they are today and who they will be in the future. This tradition has helped in structuring Japanese society and given them a sense of belongingness. It enables Japan to unite as one country because of this shared tradition.
That’s why it is essential to preserve the traditional art of kimono making. People who are skilled in this art form learned how to make them when they were young. They passed it on to the next generation to continue the tradition. However, many people are turning their backs on this precious craftsmanship. This painstaking process is losing its significance in Japan today. The few people who know the art are struggling to pass on the tradition.
Maintaining the art form
There is one man who recognises the importance of kimono making to Japan’s nation-building project. Dr Patokh Chodiev, a businessman, philanthropist and diplomat, has a deep appreciation of Japanese art, culture and traditions. It spurred him on to rescue the dying art of kimono making. His devotion to the arts has to do with his previous experience as a diplomat in Japan where his love and enthusiasm for it grew.
Chodiev made it his mission to save at least a portion of the kimono making industry, and he successfully did that by sponsoring Itchiku Kubota, a renowned craftsman of kimono art. Because of his backing, the world-famous collection of at least 100 Kubota kimonos is being exhibited all around the world. He is sharing their beauty and promoting the Japanese arts to deepen the appreciation of other people.
Chodiev: a man of word and action
Chodiev’s actions are part of his promise to foster intercultural exchange between Japan and Russia. He has made it his mission to promote the active popularising of Japanese culture in Russia and popularising Russian culture in Japan. He founded the International Chodiev Foundation with this in mind.
What is clear is that because of the help of Dr Chodiev, the art of kimono making will outlast many generations and will continue to flourish in the future.
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