Synopsis by John Schietinger
National Geographic: Living Treasures of Japan profiles nine established and respected Japanese artists. The Japanese government originally honored 70 craftspeople and performing artists working in ancient arts with a stipend and national admiration; the nine artists featured in the program are culled from that group of artists. Each artist works in a wholly unique ancient medium. For example, one man is a swordmaker who designs weapons based on special rituals; another artist is a dollmaker who gives every piece an distinct personality. A 90-year-old female weaver of indigo is the oldest artist featured; she died shortly after appearing in the video. Directors Noxon and Boyajian travel throughout the Japanese landscape to construct the touching and comprehensive profiles of the artists.
artist, craftsmanship, dollmaker, Japan, swordsmith, treasure, weaving