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Netsuke Wood-Carving Workshops

with Hape Kiddle

June 10 & 11, 2021

Learn the ancient art of netsuke wood carving with master wood carver Hape Kiddle. In this beginner’s workshop, attendees will learn how to shape and carve their own netsuke fish using traditional wood carving hand tools and Japanese carving techniques such as himotoshi (carving passages in the netsuke for the cord) and ukibori (relief carving). 

Attendees will be provided with a piece of sandalwood that is prepped for carving along with tools so that participants can learn basic netsuke techniques. At the end of the workshop, participants will take home their very own netsuke fish and ability to finish the piece with their new found skills.

This workshop coincides with the Contemporary Wood-Carved Netsuke exhibition, on display at The Japan Foundation, Sydney from June 4-26, 2021.


Netsuke are small handcrafted objects whose production flourished in the Japanese Edo period (1603-1868). During this time, culture around what is now considered Japanese clothing such as kimono also blossomed. It was customary for people to carry items such as money pouches, inrо̄ (medicine containers) and other items by suspending them by cord from their obi (sash worn with kimono). Netsuke served as toggles that were attached to the end of the cords to help keep these items from slipping beneath the obi. Over the centuries netsuke have come to become highly personalised statements of great artistic and historical value. 

This workshop is recommended for adults. 


Sculptor, jeweller and woodworking master, Hape Kiddle has been working on refining a language in shape and form that reflects his deep connection to the natural world. His work demonstrates the development of language through mediums of wood, stone and precious materials. For more than a decade he has shared his love for making things by hand through conducting courses and workshops around Australia.



June 10, 2021 (Thursday)
10:00am – 4:00pm (includes 45 min break)
$100 + booking fee

Bookings Full

June 11, 2021 (Friday)
10:00am- 4:00pm (includes a 45 min break)
$100 + booking fee

Bookings Full

The Japan Foundation, Sydney
Level 4, Central Park
28 Broadway, Chippendale NSW 2008
(access via lifts)


(02) 8239 0055

Cancellations are accepted and full refunds will be offered up to 7 days prior to the workshop. No refunds given after this time.

Header image: Courtesy of the artist

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