Friends of the Project

Akiu kōgei no sato 秋保工芸の里

 Akiu kōgei no sato (Akiu Craft Park) is a gathering of nine Japanese artisans who have inherited generations-old  traditional Japanese art skills. These talented cloth-dyers, kokeshi-makers, top-carvers, and other talented artisans have established their workshops and homes in Akiu, Japan, at Akiu kōgei no sato, where they invite tourists and other interested parties from around the world to see these special arts brought to life first-hand by these masters and their apprentices. The Akiu artisans generously invited us into their homes during this project.


 ariTV is a high-quality internet-based television station supporting the promotion of events and cultural traditions of the Sendai area. Takahashi Fumiya, a member of the ariTV team, has done incredible work on the PR campaign for Akiu kōgei no sato, showcasing the fabulous work produced by the Akiu artisans. You can follow the wonderful videos and photographs supported by ariTV on the Akiu Art Facebook page. ariTV has generously given us permission to use many of their photos, including the archive banner.

University of Michigan Center for Japanese Studies

Partial funding for this project was provided a grant from the University of Michigan Center for Japanese Studies. Although the Center for Japanese Studies was formally established in 1947, Michigan’s connection with Japan through student exchange extends as far back as the 1870s. Today, the University of Michigan’s Center for Japanese Studies supports undergraduate, M.A., and Ph.D students within an interest in Japan across a variety of disciplines and over sixty researchers with Japan-related interests university-wide. The Center for Japanese Studies is also extensively involved in community outreach in support of cultural exchange, publication on Japan topics, and interdisciplinary exchange inside and outside of the university.

Morikami Museum

Since its founding in 1977, the Morikami Museum has set out to provide authentic Japanese cultural experiences for entertainment, education, and inspiration in South Florida. Continuing the legacy of the Yamato Colony of Japanese farmers in northern Boca Raton, the Museum hosts a permanent exhibit on the Colony and its founder, Jo Sakai, who hailed from Miyazu, Japan. The Museum also houses more than 7,000 Japanese art objects, and features traditional Japanese architectural design, 16 acres of traditional Japanese gardens, exhibition galleries, a theater, research library, classrooms, a scenic cafe, and a full 200-acre nature park. In the summer of 2014, the Morikami Museum accepted Janell’s collection of over 100 Edogoma created by Hiroi Michiaki.

Kickstarter Contributors:

Special thanks to our top contributors:

Mindy Landeck
Elizabeth Goldsmith-Conley
James-Henry Holland
Stefan Flickinger
Masayuki Hashimoto
Brian Serr

And great thanks also to our other contributors:

Shariq Ansari
Stephanie W.
Jessica H.
Nyssa Shannon
Wade Z.
Leah Zoller
Ben J. Plotsky
Erika W.
Travis Seifman
Thien-Kieu L.
Danielle Reed
Rachel Reed
Matthew M.
Chris Gulick
John S.
Sarah B.
Kathryn B.
Zahi K.
Slade Powell
Kathryn H.
Carol M.
Jeff O.
Nick H.
Steve F.
Rachel G.
Lindsey E.
Alex A.