I find myself fascinated by scars. I’m equally attracted to them as I am terrified. I chalk it up to the car crash phenomenon. You know you should look away but you find yourself staring. I do not fixate out of disrespect and obviously some people are more receptive than others to the stares. I imagine there are so many feelings attached to them depending on size and placement. Pride, perhaps if its an old sports injury and maybe even fear from the ones that cause insecurities…But these scars, like these pieces of vintage furniture I like, always have a story.
There is an ancient Japanese technique called Kintsugi that I’m drawn to. It translates to “golden joinery”. It began in the late 15th century when a shogun sent a damaged Chinese tea bowl back to be fixed. When returned, it was held together with metal staples. This launched the craftsmen on a quest for a new form of repair that could make a broken piece look better than it was new. Once the piece is broken and mended, however, the order is disrupted by bold zig zags of gold. Today we are often quick to repair broken things in such a way as to conceal the repair. I love the idea of turning something we perceive as ugly into something that is beautiful and cherished. Instead of hiding these scars they’re brought back together into a comprehensible experience with poetic lines.
I think perfection is ugly. Somwhere in the things humans make, I want to see scars, failure, disorder, distortion – Yohji Yamamoto
If you’re so inclined to learn more about Kintsgugi, click on the video below: