Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Boonchin calligraphy paperweights

文鎮

Boonchin calligraphy paperweightsbunchin (pronounced 'boon-chin') is Japanese for 'paperweight' and refers to the paperweights used in calligraphy.

I have studied Japanese calligraphy and am a keen, if amateur, practictioner of the art of drawing characters in Indian ink. Calligraphy in the East is initimately connected with the art of meditation and expresses the simplicity, patience and release of energy of that stern but liberating practice.

The paperweight is a vital tool in the act of expressing oneself throught the brush. It's intimacy with gravity is the yin to the yang of the spiritual flair that the act of wielding the brush evokes. Calligraphy being, like any art, an expression foremost of individuality, it is therefore fitting that the paperweight itself should be attributed something of a personality.

Whale calligraphy paperweightThe paperweights illustrated above are a selection of the kind used in Japanese calligraphy. The massive, gentleness of the whale, the dophin, expressing nature's affinity with humankind, the tengu: a carnival-like character tied up in the battle of good and evil, the carp: a traditional symbol of strength as it battles upstream to mate, and the gentle, cool, green curves of the cucumber representing the inanimate world's bounty.

All of these are cast in solid beautifully molded iron, some of them subtley colored as well. They feel like quality, resting firmly in your hand, and are of the durability that makes for a long-loved possession - even an heirloom. For all their artistry, quality and craftship they are surprisingly affordable.

Buy genuine Japanese boonchin iron calligraphy paperweights here.

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