Tour of Japan | Japanese Sword Smith Demonstration

Apr 17 | Evan | No Comments |

The family I was guiding around Japan during cherry blossom season was interested in participating in quite a few experiences. One of which I was really excited about was visiting with a real Japanese sword smith and getting a demonstration while we were able to take photos. When I was first asked about this, I immediately told them that I would certainly look into finding a Japanese sword smith but also told them I was not overly optimistic about finding one open to allowing us to visit and take photos. I had attempted to contact quite a few and received no response before coming across

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I did receive a response back very quickly and after describing what we were looking for, they thought that they could help me arrange something. I was also informed, like with many things in Japanese culture, there is a certain procedure to be followed when attending a demonstration and after agreeing to their terms to respect the artist, his creations and culture, we were able to arrange a private demonstration!

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The good folks at Tamahagane Arts introduced us to Fusataro san and arranged for us to visit his workplace. Much like the art of photography, a master sword smith needs to be able to control the available light to create the best swords to judge temperatures among other factors. So inside was always dark but sometimes he opened the window a little so that there was a little more light, but as you can see from the photos, the lighting conditions were always challenging. That being said, we came away with some great photos and also had a wonderful time. I love spending time with anyone that puts as much passion into their work, whether it is a coffee barista or sword smith. It was certainly an unforgettable experience that I hope to be able to introduce others to as well. Fusataro san has a warm and welcoming personality and speaks English well so that he could explain most aspects of his work to us but if you can’t speak Japanese or have a good understanding of Japanese culture, you would need to go with an interpreter or guide like myself.

You can see the full gallery after the break: More