We asked, “What do you resolve to fix in 2017, and how?”
I think what I aim to resolve in 2017 is how to give our people more time to make films, to take photographs, to write. In short, how can I give our people the freedom to do their best work?
Firstly, only have one meeting a week. And that can’t last more than an hour. I will protect their time. Secondly, I will give them all the tools they need, from computers to cameras, etc. And thirdly, I will tell them that they are no use to me unless they make some great whopping mistakes.
To get very good at something we have to be willing to be very bad at it while we learn. I want them to understand it just doesn’t matter what other people think. “You can’t be an important life-changing presence without also being a joke and embarrassment to others” (Mark Manson).
I fix many ceramics and lacquer wares for Japanese restaurants, temples and shrines throughout the year, and between these daily works, people close to me bring their possessions to be fixed.
My neighbour brought in her grandfather’s jubako (traditional lunch box). My father’s friend, a potter, brought his favourite work broken in the kiln. My wife’s rice bowl and daughter’s cup are also waiting for me to fix.
Each piece has its own story and special reason to be fixed. And I have a special reason to fix each piece that comes from my relationship with the owner.
I tend to be late fixing the possessions of people close to me, as my professional work comes first. But the personal projects are the ones that show me the most important reason why we fix broken things.
I resolve to fix the precious possessions of my precious people in 2017, to regain the important spirit of mending.
Muneaki practices the traditional Japanese craft of maki-e, including kintsugi (repairing broken ceramics with gold), working with and learning from father/master Yasuhiro at studio Maki-e Baisen.
Tom van Deijnen
There is not one specific thing I’d like to fix in the strict sense of the word, but I do have some habits I’d like to fix.
The most exciting fix for me is related to my Visible Mending Programme and making my own clothes. I have started to sew a lot by hand, repairing, for instance, vintage blankets and tea towels. I want to fix my hand-stitch technique, so I no longer have shredded fingertips.
I will fix this by spending some time with a tailor on Savile Row, as the traditional hand-stitch techniques, once mastered, are efficient and quick. I’m looking forward to learning from a master and sharing my progress on my blog.
By creating beautiful and visible textile repairs, Tom is exploring the boundaries of when the life of a garment starts and ends, and promoting an alternative to fashion’s throwaway culture.
Photo credit: DeShaun Craddock (header)