Ichimatsu Pattern
This episode looks at Japanese-style check patterns (Ichimatsu-moyo). The Kyogen performer Shigeyama Ippei is a great fan. His daily wardrobe, from his suits to his socks, features checks. He shows us some of his favorite items that have been with him for 20 years. Check patterns appear on pottery vessels and figures from Japan's pre-historic era, as well as in the prints of the ukiyo-e artist Toshusai Sharaku, who was active in the late 18th century. We take a look at some stylish black-checked glassware, as well as some examples of Kutani ware. The check patterns of the latter, made up of 3,500 tiny squares, appear to move. The grandson of the landscaper Shigemori Mirei (1896-1975) tells us about the check-pattern garden his grandfather designed for Tofuku-ji Temple in Kyoto Prefecture. And we take a look at some check-pattern sliding doors in an old house.