"Tosa Washi", the traditional Japanese paper made in the Tosa region, is one of the two nationally designated traditional Japanese crafts from Kochi.
"Tosa Washi" is said to have a history spanning over 1000 years and has roughly 300 variations. One of which is said to be the thinnest washi in the world, known as "Tengujo".
"Tengujo" is an extremely thin type of washi almost transparent in its thinness, but surprisingly strong and sturdy making it perfect for the restoration and preservation of old books, paintings and wooden statues.
Other uses of "Tosa Washi" include envelopes ✉, calendars, wrapping paper, business cards, and even art. "Tosa Washi" has a lot of uses to this day and had even more uses in the past.
If you are curious to see the various ways "Tosa Washi" is and was used for, you can visit the Ino-cho Paper Museum in Kochi.
At the museum you can see numerous artifacts that incorporated this traditional craft, as well as watching and learning how washi is made.
The high quality of "Tosa Washi" is a product of the rich materials found in the bountiful nature of Kochi and the craftsmanship of the producers.
During production, the paper is strained in water and it is said that straining the paper in colder conditions makes it whiter and gives it a better finish.
So why not dropping by the Ino-cho Paper Museum during the colder months of the year like January and February, to see one of Kochi's rich traditional craft in peak condition?