Hakata Ningyo are a nationally designated traditional craft with a 400 year history behind them, beloved by enthusiasts all around the world for their portrayal of the myths, music, and kabuki traditions they draw from. Kajiwara Shoji is one heir to this tradition.
As a nationally designated traditional craftsman, he has devoted himself to the construction of Hakata Ningyo for over 40 years.
Kajiwara has engaged in the creation of many kinds of dolls, including beautiful women, warriors, children, clowns, and animals, while keeping traditions alive.
He has received many awards, including the Prime Minister’s Award twice, the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport, and Tourism Award six times, and has been widely acknowledged as the representative craftsman when it comes to Hakata Ningyo.
My production is based on “the desire to leave human warmth in the clay.”I work across various genres: I create fiburines of beautiful women, men, and children, of Kannon and Jizo.I am very particular about carved lines and gradation techniques in my work.
Creating dolls that express emotion, i also wish to pass on my techniques to the younger generation.
1970 Hakata Ningyo maker, studied under Hiroo Honda.
1978 Established an independent practice as a Hakata Ningyo maker and joined Hakata-Hakuchokai.
1996 Awarded title of traditional craftsman.
1997 Assumed chairmanship of the Hakata Doll Union Youth Group.
2008 Assumed vice chairmanship of Hakata Ningyo Merchants Cooperative Union.
2015 Acknowledge a “Hakata Meister” by Fukuoka City.