[Japanese Version ]

This Sight is sumi maker's [Boku-undo Co.,Ltd.] home page in Nara Japan



For over 200 years, the Boku-undo Co., Ltd. has supplied Japanese artists with the highest quality materials for both Sumieian Indian-ink drawing) and Calligraphy. The manufacturing method of sumi was first introduced into Japan in 610 by Doncho, a priest from Kokuryo (Korea). In Nara period, hand-copying sutras became common and ink sticks were made by the sumi-makers of the Imperial Court. An ink stick of this period is now preserved in "Sho-So-In" Emperors heirloom. Soot-based ink, seen today, began in the 15th century. It was made from lamp-oil soot. Apparently this type of Sumi was first made in Kofuku-ji Buddhist temple in Nara. The production of sumi subsequently spread, but more than 90% of domestic stick ink is still produced in Nara. This traditional industry requires Skilled manufacturing techniques and the optimum time for manufacture. The cold winter of Nara makes it one of the hardest jobs in Japan. "I care too much for my sumi. I have used it once. My attachment to the ink is shortening the days of my life." We do not know when this sentiment was first uttered, but since sumi was designed to be rubbed on an inkstone and merge bit by bit with water for the brush, each precious stick is fated to disappear sooner or later. The man who said these words may have loved sumi too much. Like wine, sumi is meant to be consumed....."and appreciated. Sumi is indeed "black as ink" yet it may express subtle shades of bluish black. Furthermore, it may be manipulated in a variety of ways to produce a spread or blur or assume a liquid transparency. Characters brushed 2,000 years ago remain vivid to our eyes today. Often the hues of the ink are more beautiful now than when they were first delineated. With sumi the passage of time introduces new depth and never depreciate but will continue to gain in quality and value as time goes on.

Boku-undo Co., Ltd.
5-35 1choume Rokujyou Nara city Nara, Japan
@Fax: 0742-45-6083