Friday, December 9, 2011

Itoman Glass Factory and Pottery

Tommy Lee Jones - a fixture on many Okinawan
soft drink machines.
Clay sculptors making Shisa Dogs
by  Pa Rock
Cultural Explorer

Two weeks ago my friends Valerie and Kelly and I drove south to the glass factory and pottery at Itoman where we purchased a few holiday gifts and then traveled on further south to Peace Park, a memorial to servicemen, both Japanese and Americans, that is located on the southernmost tip of Okinawa.  I had made this same trip last year with another friend, Daniel, so some of the pictures may look familiar.

Okinawan lad running a booth at the glass factory -
when Okinawans pose, it is always with the
peace sign.

Forty years ago Itoman was little more than a fishing village.  I can remember driving through on our way to Peace Park, then called Suicide Cliffs, and seeing the fishermen hard at work along the shore mending their nets.   Today Itoman is a bustling city, actually an extension of the capital, Naha, with buildings so dense that there is no view of the sea from the main road.

It was a nice Saturday outing.
A glassblower at work

Fine glassware from Itoman

Glass sculpture of a tangle of snakes

Assorted Itoman glassware

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