I read a long interview with Norihiro Miyairi, a master katana maker, done by the folks at RocketNews24. Discussions concerning modern swordsmithing are rare, considering the decline of the number of traditional katana swordsmiths in Japan due to the changing times. Some of us may be aware that there are many traditional cultures, arts, crafts, performances, and languages that are fading away, whether it be due to a lack of interest or a lack of necessity. Miyairi seems to be one of the remaining craftsmen who is still working because of a love of the craft. In the interview, he detailed his background, his experience as an apprentice, what it’s like working as a swordsmith in Japan, and also where some of his recent clients are from.
This quote gives a nice summary of the interview:
I would want as many people as possible to be interested in swords. Also, unless young swordsmiths are able to make a decent living, we won’t have the next generation of sword makers to carry on the trade no matter how many apprentices we train, so I hope we can create a system to better support young sword craftsmen and hopefully see an increase in the overall number of katana makers.
Along with the inspirational interview are many photos that provide a glimpse of his working environment and process. I highly recommend checking it out! The link to the article can be found in the first paragraph and below.
Source and Feature Photo credit: RocketNews24
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