Join artist Maki Aizawa with Tsuyo Onodera to learn more about the techniques and processes used to create the textiles in Weaving Splendor: Treasures of Asian Textiles from The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art.


About Maki Aizawa and Tsuyo Onodera

Maki Aizawa is a multifaceted artist and producer with a passion for her homeland, Japan. She grew up in the northern city of Sendai, and from her earliest years was immersed in the traditions of Japanese arts and culture. Her parents ran a kimono-making school—her mother, Tsuyo Onodera, is a master kimono maker. Aizawa remembers a childhood with hundreds of “aunties”—students who lived with her family during their five-year apprenticeships. In addition to kimono making, she studied many other time-honored Japanese expressive arts, including ikebana (floral design), shodo (calligraphy), and the koto (a traditional stringed instrument).

In 2011, an earthquake and tsunami devastated Aizawa’s home district in Sendai. Since then, she has fostered collaborations and orchestrated projects with mainly Japanese master artists, working to revitalize Japanese artistic traditions. With her appreciation of Japanese history, traditions, and skills, Aizawa approaches each art form as one to be preserved and sustained.

Aizawa created her own clothing brand, Kamiko, in 2021. As founder and designer, she brought together a women’s collective of licensed kimono makers in the Tohoku region of Japan, all of whom were trained by her mother. Aizawa’s vision is to put a contemporary spin on kimono traditions, creating designs that can be incorporated into everyday use. Onodera’s mastery of traditional techniques and Aizawa’s creativity combine to create contemporary garments that preserve the traditions of kimono making.


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