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Secretariat International KOGEI Award in Toyama

Application for International KOGEI Award in Toyama now open! 【Application Deadline: January 10, 2020】


Press release
PDF ver.


〜Inviting “hand works” from all over the world and proposing a new craft movement from Toyama Prefecture!〜

Toyama Prefecture holds the International KOGEI Award in Toyama for people who are 50 years of age or younger and engaged in craft makings, such as artists, craftspeople, and designers. This award is newly held based on the achievement of the U-50 INTERNATIONAL HOKURIKU KOGEI (artisan crafts) AWARDS ( which was held as part of the International Hokuriku Crafts Summit in Toyama Prefecture in 2017. This will be implemented according to the three-year plan starting from this fiscal year.

This award is for works rich in expressiveness and originality created by using traditional techniques and materials of crafts from around the world, as well as works that include handwork(s) in their production processes. Our three-year plan is as follows: in 2019, application entry and the first round of jurying are conducted; in 2020, the second round of jurying is performed, and the exhibition of award-winning works and award ceremony are held, as well as the exchange program for award winners with local craftspeople and companies in Toyama; based on the result of the exchange program in the previous year, the collaborative production program is conducted in 2021. 

This Award aims:
•To comprehensively evaluate and encourage not only crafts, expressions and techniques, but also the ideas and efforts, strategies and practices, and future vision of each craftsperson.

•To reconsider the fixed concept of traditional crafts once from an unbiased perspective, capturing the global trends in crafts world that are becoming borderless and cross-disciplinary more and more, and create international networks and collaboration opportunities, which will enable us to draw a future vision of crafts.

•To provide opportunities for many people to learn about the situation surrounding crafts and new trends of crafts through this award.

We are looking forward to many entries from craftspeople who are practicing novel KOGEI (artisan crafts), introducing the art created only by KOGEI which consists of inextricably connected two elements, tradition, and innovation.   

◆ Outline 

1. Application period
October 1, 2019 – January 10, 2020

2. Prize

Grand Prize (1 individual/group) 2,000,000 JPY / Excellence Award (1 individual/group) 500,000  JPY / Honorable Mention Award (4 individuals/groups) 300,000 JPY / Sompo Japan Nipponkoa Special Prize (1 individual/group)  300,000 JPY

3. Privilege
The Grand Prize-winning work will be added to the collection of the Toyama Prefectural Museum of Art and Design. And, award-winners will be invited to the exchange program and collaborative production program with the local craftspeople and companies in Toyama in or after 2021.

4. Application method
Web entry on the website (

◆ Application Requirements

1. Eligibility:
(1) Must be 50 years of age or younger (as of January 10, 2020, deadline for the first-round of jurying)
(2) No restrictions on nationality,
(3) An individual or group engaged in craft-making (e.g. artist, artisan, designer)     

2. Works eligible to apply:
(1) Works rich in originality and expressiveness, utilizing techniques and materials that have been cultivated and cherished by each region’s craft in the world.
(2) Works produced through processes that include hand-work. 
(3) Works produced on or after January 10, 2015, which have never been exhibited or submitted to other prizes/awards.
(4) Works made with techniques and materials as follows: metal, lacquer, wood, paper, textile, ceramics, glass, leather, and more, or combinations thereof.
(5) 2-dimensional or 3-dimensional work.Total measures of three dimensions: 300 cm or less.Total weight: 20kg or less (including length and weight of work’s frame, stand or holder, etc.)
(6) Application limit: Maximum one work per individual (or group)

3. Schedule: 
-First round of jurying: middle February 2020
-Finalists are selected. (Exhibition of the award-winning works is held at the Toyama Prefectural Museum of Art and Design.)
-Second-round of jurying: late May 2020 Award winners are determined. 
-Exhibition: late May – early July 2020 (Exhibition period: about for two months) at the Toyama Prefectural Museum of Art and Design
-Award ceremony: late June 2020

4. Contact Information for Application:
Secretariat International KOGEI Award in Toyama (in PCO, Ltd.)
Tel. +81-76-461-3288    E-mail. 

※For more information, please visit our website

◇ Summary of the last award: U-50 INTERNATIONAL HOKURIKU KOGEI (artisan crafts) AWARDS

〜Held as a part of the International Hokuriku Kogei Summit in 2017〜

International Hokuriku Kogei Summit is a wide-area event in five successive years to promote attractive features of Kogei (artisan crafts) in Hokuriku area, cooperated by Japanese Agency for Cultural Affairs and three prefectures of Hokuriku area (Toyama, Fukui, Ishikawa). In the first year, it was held in Toyama prefecture.
Among the event, U-50 INTERNATIONAL HOKURIKU KOGEI (artisan crafts) AWARDS was held as a main program for young artisans: artists, craftsmen and designers under the age of 50. There were 403 entries from 35 countries including Japan, within and without Toyama prefecture.
Through the first round and the second round of jurying, 6 people were chosen as finalists. They made their final presentations towards the judging committee, in which Hidetoshi Nakata, a former Japanese National soccer team player, took part.
As a result, “Continuation of non-continuation” by Takakuni Kawahara, a washi Japanese traditional paper maker who lived in Tateyama town, Toyama prefecture, won the grand prize. Not only he inherited the tradition, but also he kept trying new techniques. His attitude and originality were highly appreciated.

◆Press Contact:
※Promotional Photos;
Epiphany Works, Ltd. Contact persons: Ms. Ogino / Ms. Hayashiguchi
・Tel. +81-766-54-6210

◆Contact Information for Application:
Secretariat International KOGEI Award in Toyama (in PCO, Ltd.)
Tel. +81-76-461-3288 E-mail.

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