A Different Kind of Beauty: Wabi and Kintsugi


Symmetry and geometrical perfection are seldom seen in the natural world. The aesthetic concept of Wabi draws attention to the state of things "as they are" and appreciation of this natural state. It calls for the shift in one’s mindset and highlights a different, perhaps, less conventional kind of beauty. This beauty has a lasting effect and is a process rather than a moment. One needs to stop, slow down and take their time to appreciate. Wabi constitutes the place of rest and calm rather than unattainable perfection. Wabi often refers to the realm of humans – all different and therefore able to fit together in a more cohesive way rather than in the perfect world, where strict proportions and rules are imposed. Kintsugi is the way to repair objects highlighting the repairs with gold, silver or red. It implies beauty despite repair, not because of it. While one cannot eliminate breakage itself once it has happened, one can build and rebuild beyond the accident. But probably most of all rebuild one’s attitude and develop the appreciation of a different kind of beauty despite and beyond repairs. Accept repairs as part of this object and experience it in a different, more human way. This paper will focus on application of Wabi, Kintsugi and other Japanese aesthetic concepts as pedagogical methods beyond their immediate and traditional place in art.

Author Information
Alexandre Avdulov, Saint Mary's University, Canada

Paper Information
Conference: KAMC2020
Stream: Aesthetics and Design

This paper is part of the KAMC2020 Conference Proceedings (View)
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To cite this article:
Avdulov A. (2021) A Different Kind of Beauty: Wabi and Kintsugi ISSN: 2436-0503 – The Kyoto Conference on Arts, Media & Culture 2020: Official Conference Proceedings https://doi.org/10.22492/issn.2436-0503.2021.14
To link to this article: https://doi.org/10.22492/issn.2436-0503.2021.14

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Posted by James Alexander Gordon