Thomas Akhøj Ibsen

Kunstner, kunstklinker & Cand.Mag. i filosofi og kulturformidling

STAR WARS omfavner Kintsugi

I en fjern galakse, hvor episke kampe mellem lysets og mørkets kræfter raser, findes der en subtil og dyb symbolsk handling, der forener det gamle med det nye. I Ahsoka’s Star Wars-serie får vi et unikt indblik i denne fusion af historie og håb. Stor Admiralen Thrawn´ stormtropper, slidte og erfaringsrige, bærer med stolthed deres Kintsugi-inspirerede uniformer.

Kintsugi er mere end blot en reparationsteknik; det er en livsfilosofi. Det er ideen om at omfavne arrene, ære historien og styrke genstandens sjæl. På samme måde som Ahsoka Tano guider sine tropper, har Kintsugi inspireret dem til at omfavne deres egne skader, både fysisk og mentalt. De ser i disse skader et symbol på overlevelse, vækst og transformation.

Når vi betragter Kintsugi, lærer vi, at det er i vores sår og brud, at vores sande styrke og skønhed ofte findes. Ligegyldigt hvor hårdt livet rammer os, kan vi vælge at lade vores historie blive et kunstværk af helbredelse og fornyelse, præget af guldlinjer, der minder os om vores egen uudslettelige værdi.

Så lad os hylde Kintsugi ikke kun som en metode til at reparere keramik, men som en inspirerende påmindelse om, at vores egne “skår” og erfaringer udgør vores unikke historie. Gennem Kintsugi og Ahsoka’s stormtropper lærer vi, at vores ar er vores skatte, og de fortæller historien om vores rejse mod styrke og lys, selv i de mørkeste tider.

The Art of Kintsugi

Ved at reparere ødelagt keramik er det muligt at give det nyt liv til keramikken, der bliver endnu mere raffineret takket være dets “ar”. Den japanske kunst af kintsugi lærer at brudte genstande ikke er noget at smide væk, men at vise med stolthed. Når en skål, tekande eller dyrebar vase falder og bryder ind i tusind stykker, smider vi dem vredt og fortryllende. Men der er et alternativ, en japansk praksis, der fremhæver og forbedrer pauserne og dermed tilføjer værdi til det ødelagte objekt.
Det hedder kintsugi (金 継 ぎ) eller kintsukuroi (金 繕 い), bogstaveligt gyldigt (“kin”) og reparation (“tsugi”). Denne traditionelle japanske kunst bruger et ædelmetal – pulveriseret guld eller sølv støvet på en speciel lak, der binder guldet til keramikken. Teknikken består i at forbinde fragmenter og give dem et nyt, mere raffineret aspekt. Hvert repareret stykke er unikt på grund af den tilfældighed, hvormed keramik knuses og de uregelmæssige mønstre dannes, der forøges ved brug af metaller.

Arene bliver hvad de skal udstille

Med denne teknik er det muligt at skabe sande og altid forskellige kunstværker, hver med sin egen historie og skønhed takket være de unikke revner, der dannes, når objektet går i stykker, som om de var sår, der efterlader forskellige mærker på hver enkelt af os.

The kintsugi technique may have been invented around the fifteenth century, when Ashikaga Yoshimasa, the eighth shogun of the Ashikaga shogunate after breaking his favourite cup of tea sent it to China to get it repaired. Unfortunately, at that time the objects were repaired with unsightly and impractical metal ligatures. It seemed that the cup was unrepairable but its owner decided to try to have some Japanese craftsmen repair it. They were surprised at the shogun’s steadfastness, so they decided to transform the cup into a jewel by filling its cracks with lacquered resin and powdered gold. The legend seems plausible because the invention of kintsugi is set in a very fruitful era for art in Japan. Under Yoshimasa’s rule the city saw the development of the Higashiyama bunka cultural movement that was heavily influenced by Zen Buddhism and started the tea ceremony (also called Sado or the Way of Tea) and ikebana (also Kado, way of flowers) traditions, the Noh theatre, the Chinese style of painting with ink.

Even today, it may take up to a month to repair the largest and most refined pieces of ceramics with the kintsugi technique, given the different steps and the drying time required.

How many beautiful messages the kintsugi technique conveys

The kintsugi technique suggests many things. We shouldn’t throw away broken objects. When an object breaks, it doesn’t mean that it is no more useful. Its breakages can become valuable. We should try to repair things because sometimes in doing so we obtain more valuable objects. This is the essence of resilience. Each of us should look for a way to cope with traumatic events in a positive way, learn from negative experiences, take the best from them and convince ourselves that exactly these experiences make each person unique, precious.

Why Creative People Sometimes Make No Sense

I’ve been having an insightful shuffle through Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi’s book Creativity: The Work and Lives of 91 Eminent People. Mihaly is a seminal professor of Psychology and Management, and is the Founding Co-Director of the Quality of Life Research Center at Claremont. He writes:

“I have devoted 30 years of research to how creative people live and work, to make more understandable the mysterious process by which they come up with new ideas and new things. If I had to express in one word what makes their personalities different from others, it’s complexity. They show tendencies of thought and action that in most people are segregated. They contain contradictory extremes; instead of being an individual, each of them is a multitude.”

Nine out of the ten people in me strongly agree with that statement. As someone paid to be creative, I sometimes feel kaleidoscopic in my views or opinions, and that “multitude” of expressions sometimes confuses those around me. Why does that happen? My thoughts make cohesive sense to me, yet others sometimes feel that I am contradicting myself or switching positions. What is wrong with me?

Mihaly describes 9 contradictory traits that are frequently present in creative people:


Most creative people have a great deal of physical energy, but are often quiet and at rest. They can work long hours at great concentration.


Most creative people tend to be smart and naive at the same time. “It involves fluency, or the ability to generate a great quantity of ideas; flexibility, or the ability to switch from one perspective to another; and originality in picking unusual associations of ideas. These are the dimensions of thinking that most creativity tests measure, and that most creativity workshops try to enhance.”


Most creative people combine both playfulness and productivity, which can sometimes mean both responsibility and irresponsibility. “Despite the carefree air that many creative people affect, most of them work late into the night and persist when less driven individuals would not.” Usually this perseverance occurs at the expense of other responsibilities, or other people.


Most creative people alternate fluently between imagination and fantasy, and a rooted sense of reality. In both art and science, movement forward involves a leap of imagination, a leap into a world that is different from our present. Interestingly, this visionary imagination works in conjunction with a hyperawareness of reality. Attention to real details allows a creative person to imagine ways to improve them.


Most creative people tend to be both introverted and extroverted. Many people tend toward one extreme or the other, but highly creative people are a balance of both simultaneously.


Most creative people are genuinely humble and display a strong sense of pride at the same time.


Most creative people are both rebellious and conservative. “It is impossible to be creative without having first internalized an area of culture. So it’s difficult to see how a person can be creative without being both traditional and conservative and at the same time rebellious and iconoclastic.”


Most creative people are very passionate about their work, but remain extremely objective about it as well. They are able to admit when something they have made is not very good.


Most creative people’s openness and sensitivity exposes them to a large amount of suffering and pain, but joy and life in the midst of that suffering. “Perhaps the most important quality, the one that is most consistently present in all creative individuals, is the ability to enjoy the process of creation for its own sake. Without this trait, poets would give up striving for perfection and would write commercial jingles, economists would work for banks where they would earn at least twice as much as they do at universities, and physicists would stop doing basic research and join industrial laboratories where the conditions are better and the expectations more predictable.”

Sometimes what appears to be a contradiction on the surface is actually a harmony in disguise. My problem has been primarily one of communication. I am learning to let people know what I am thinking and why, and explaining myself in a way that helps them understand why I am discussing multiple perspectives instead of just cleanly stating my own. At first it might not make sense, but give me/us long enough, and it will.

A trinity of Femme fatales 2/3


This is a man’s, man’s, man’s world
But it wouldn’t be nothing, nothing without a woman or a girl

This beautiful creature is made of old camera optics, my Danish passport, glue, resin, epoxy, toy wheels and small globe known as Earth. It resonates the fact that your chances in life are determined by where you are born. Aswell as a salute to womanhood. Praise them females! This is earthling and she is pregnant. #metoo

A trinity of Femme fatales 1/3

I have created a series of female/feminine sculptures – and it´s called A Trinity of Femme Fatales. They are still designed in a kind of ugly-aesthetic way, but there can be no doubt. These dangerously seductive ladies will bring insight, danger and renewed lust to your life. There is nothing like being attracted to – and seduced by a well-placed rubble of used hi-tech stuff and epoxy resin. You will want to lick them. Enjoy this new art!

A small reminder: The use of words to describe artwork is completely subjective, and artwork may mean different things to different people. Just as a proclaimer.

She´s an Iphone Lady:

Before the metaphysical art speaks – this sculpture is made by A discarded iPhone 3s, a cooling fan, keys, a stuffed baby crocodile head, led, military jacket heraldry, a turned wooden cup (self-made), epoxy clay & resin and acrylic paint.




Lets talk art! The point, meaning and metaphysical dimension of the work. In other words – what I thought while I was making it. This mixed media garbage sculpture is part of a trio of femme fatal, sometimes called maneaters. It´s a short twisted story of womanhood.

Star Trek, a Croc-Mick-Jagger and a weapon:

This is a gathering of ideal culturally perceived “female” values. In a nutshell. The first thing to make a note off is the hand. She makes a Star Trek, Volcan hand sign: Live long and prosper. That is the word if you’re a nerd/Trekkie – dear reader.

The small male/crocodile dude is a sample of men as a declining breed of the human race. Less educated, drunk, unemployed and filled with violence. This little horny fucker is a tribute to Rolling Stones iconic logo. The big tongue that licks stuff. Sexy croc-Mick horny Jagger is fucking the leg of the lady queen. Or so I thought.

A cross, dress and an iPhone:

The Red Cross: An aid organization that helps people in need and it´s the symbol of humanism. I do believe in humanism, but I was hearing a strange and very angry radio program called Je Suis Jalving. It was intentionally rightwing-biased and 85% fear mongering. You know the Muslim’s are coming to take over the world. ISIS, the califate, illegal migrants are stealing our jobs… and so on. So I placed The Red Cross band on the left arm because the rightwing groups new enemy is the goodness industry… U know like the Nazis (the incarnation of evil in western thought and the 20th century).

The dress made of wood. WTF! Lady Gaga made one out of meat. A lady’s dress must at least be red. Red is the colour of blood, roses, and hot chilis. It’s a very passionate colour. Red can mean anger or desire. BUT Wood. Is a shitty brown colour! Why? It´s all about the ecology, one with nature and love.

What about the iPhone and the air fan (lady hat), you ask? All will be answered in due time.