Kuniko Kanawa

Kuniko Kanawa.JPG

Shinto Priestess

Rev. Kuniko Kanawa is an owner of Atelier Kanawa, the Japanese concept earth friendly studio. She offers various refined traditional Japanese cultural services as a certified Kimono consultant, Kimono model, Kimono photographer, founder of Washington D.C. Kimono Club, Edo Tsumami Kanzashi artisan, certified Shinto priestess, Kagura dancer, and Shinto photographer of KAMUNABI photography.

In 2007, she officially became a certified Kimono consultant of All Japan Kimono Consultant Association after graduating from Sodo Reiho Kimono College. Since obtaining this certificate is approved by the Ministry of Education/Science and Economy/Industry, she has been offering the Kimono dressing services, Kimono photo shoot, instructing Kimono classes/workshops, and producing Kimono fashion shows/dressing demonstration, academic Kimono lectures and so on. She also works as a Kimono model, treasuring six years of classical Japanese dance training under Hanayagi style by the great instruction of Mme. Wakana Hanayagi sensei.

Using her Kimono modeling skill, she also serves as Kimono photographer for ceremonial occasions such as Omiya-mairi first time visit to Shinto shrine, Shichi-go-san, Coming of age ceremony, wedding, and Anime conventions. Her refined art of posing models in kimono is remarkably valued in the region.

In the same year, she became a professional Edo Tsumami Kanzashi artisan through intensive training by a designated master Kazuyo Hozumi, the one of only few designated Edo Tsumami Kanzashi artisans in Japan. As a successor to preserve this disappearing traditional handicraft, she creates both traditional and modern designed Tsumami Kanzashi, including custom orders. Her beautiful creations can be purchased online at http://atelierkanawa.com. She occasionally participates Arts&craft shows. She has offered monthly classes/workshops at many venues such as Japan-America Society of Washington D.C. and Carrol County Arts Council, annually workshop at many Anime conventions. She currently accepts private students only.

In early 2013, she founded Washington D.C. Kimono Club. The Club welcomes her Kimonos students who loves/sincerely respect Kimono, Japanese seasonal culture, traditional Japanese custom/manners, and Kimono decorum. Members receive the opportunities to model at her Kimono fashion shows/dressing demonstrations, participate in Japanese seasonal cultural events in Kimono, and attend Washington D.C. Kimono Club’s special workshops.

In October 2015, Rev. Kuniko Kanawa humbly received a Shinto priestess certification through Ama-no-Iwakura-Jingu, the independent Shinto shrine in Horoshima prefecture. She was naturally guided to this path as she rediscovered Shinto playing a remarkably significant role as a core soul of Japanese culture/spirituality, through deeply pursuing the traditional Japanese culture in her profession. She now takes a part to pass it on to the next generation.

The enshrined Kamunabi/Kannabi (sacred forest, rocks, tree) behind her Atelier in her private property are not publicly opened to be visited, therefore currently, she mainly conducts Shinto ceremonies by travel, Shinto lectures, Misogi-harae (water purification practice) workshops, and various blessings at her Atelier mainly the ones relating to the Kimono photo shoot.

In relation to introducing the indigenous spirituality of Ko-shinto (ancient/old Shinto), she runs KAMUNABI Photography to share with the world the beauty of KAMUNABI, where Kami dwells in great sacred nature and phenomenon in all universe, which can be universal in many other countries.

The most recent exciting news about Rev. Kanawa is that she is now classically trained in Kagura Shinto theatrical dance, by Kato Toshihiko-sensei of Kagura institute in Japan. Starting with her first offering stage at U.S. National Arboretum in November 2017, she is continuing to offer Kagura in the United States.