TeensWay Asian Kite Making Workshops
The Wing Luke Asian Museum
Seattle, Washington
April 23 - July 9, 2006

With the student-chosen theme of “Kites” the Wing Luke Asian Museum invited me to lead a series of Asian kite making workshops for its youth outreach, TeensWay.  I used this series of four meetings with a select group of youth to focus on four regions of Asia’s kite making cultures, culminating in an afternoon celebration and kite flying at Kite Hill, a popular Seattle spot.

In the first workshop, focusing on Japanese kite making, I led the students in a discussion on washi, Japanese handmade paper, continuing to instruct the students in paper folding and the Shibori influenced dyeing method to create skins for Japanese fish kites, designed by master kite maker Nobuhiko Yoshizumi.

The second meeting focused on Korean fighter kites, comparing the fighter kites of  Korea, India, and the Philippines, with those of western style.  Students constructed their own Korean fighter kites after decorating them using ancient Asian symbols.

Focusing on Cambodian kites in the third workshop, the students watched a video on the Cambodian musical kite, the Kleng Ek, then I gave a short discussion on the recent rebirth and importance of kiting in Cambodian culture.  I then conducted a demonstration on splitting and bending bamboo, an integral material in all Asian kite cultures, to make a traditional Cambodian Pocket Kite. 

For the fourth and final workshop with the Wing Luke TeensWay youth, I led the students on a collaborative effort in the making of a Chinese Dragon-Head centipede kite. 

click on image for larger view
Chinese Dragon Kites
Dermer's Dragon
Kite Culture
Korean Kites
The Wing Luke Asian Museum

© Greg Kono 2000-2007 All Rights Reserved.