281
12
3

錦鯉

Nishikigoi

Ornamental nishikigoi (“brocaded” carp) swim serenely around a large tank. Their names highlight their distinctive colors. Red-and-white Kohaku evokes the Hinomaru (Japanese flag). Taisho Sanshoku and Showa Sanshoku feature black, red, and white spots. Yamabuki Kogane shimmers like gold.

Developed in Japan, nishikigoi are a unique type of domesticated koi bred for decorative enjoyment and raised with aquafarming. This culture — which pays meticulous attention to colors and patterns — originated in an old Yamakoshi village in Niigata Prefecture during the 19th century. Nishikigoi were first exhibited at the Tokyo Expo in 1914, sparking popular interest and creation of many varieties that Japanese people know and love.

Recently, sophisticated transportation enables nishikigoi export to overseas countries. Nishikigoi have become status symbols of affluence even among enthusiasts outside Japan, and are gradually spreading around the globe.

Nishikigoi Farm Matsuda is a koi farm that was moved to Nagaoka, Niigata Prefecture, following the Mid Niigata Prefecture Earthquake in 2004. Now recovered from immense damage due to the quake, this farm raises about 40,000 carp. Matsuo Matsuda, a fourth generation nishikigoi farmer, explains that the most important condition for raising nishikigoi is aesthetic appreciation of their beauty.

Prices of nishikigoi vary greatly, depending on patterns, body size, and shape. Low-priced nishikigoi can start from 5,000 yen (approx. USD $48) while expensive ones sometimes cost more than 20 million yen (approx. USD $192,000). Marketable colors and patterns are traditionally fixed in Japan. However, unconventional colors and patterns sometimes become popular outside Japan. Valuable nishikigoi varieties are now diversified.

Note: Exchange rate USD $1 = JP Yen ¥104

Lately, nishikigoi can even be purchased via the Internet. However, the greatest pleasure of nishikigoi shopping is to visit nishikigoi farms and talk to farmers like Mr. Matsuda when purchasing. Of course, knowledge enhances enjoyment of nishikigoi. But sharing the passion of farmers for their nishikigoi deepens your affection for nishikigoi.

Note: Products shown in this article are not available in Mitsukoshi or Isetan.

Matsuda Koi Farm
http://www.koikoimatsuda.jp/en/

Japanese knives
包丁
Picks
楊枝
Cosmetics
化粧品
Kimono
着物
Karaoke
カラオケ
Sushi-go-round
回転寿司
Sumo wrestler
大相撲力士
Hot spring spa
温泉
Architecture Street
建築ストリート
Novels of Haruki Murakami
村上春樹の小説
Tsukiji Market
築地市場
Tokyo Tower
東京タワー
International Avenue
国際通り
Ryukyu Karate
琉球空手
Shiisaa
シーサー
Utaki
御嶽
Malaysia
Final Fantasy VII Advent Children
Japan
Neon Genesis EVANGELION
Japan
VOCALOID
Japan
VOCALOID
Harajuku girl leads next-generation kawaii.
Outdoor girl finds kawaii in a sleeping bag.
Introducing Japan’s latest arts to the world.
Toybox kawaii shop shows people power.
Tea master
茶道家
Nurturing the arts
京都ギャラリー
Machiya bars
京町家の夜
Ikkyu-ji Natto
一休寺納豆
KOBE TETSUJIN 28-GO
mega-size robot who saves the peace in Kobe city
OSAMU TEZUKA
creator of Japan’s manga and anime cultures
NEXT GENERATION
TOYOTA x STUDIO4°C collaboration begins a new PES Project called “Next Generation”
3D LATTE ART
the ultimate shape of art to come — too cute to drink?
SUKIYAKI
すき焼き
URUSHI
漆芸
TEMPURA
天婦羅
WHISKY
ウイスキー
TAKU OBATA
Nerhol
YAYOI KUSAMA
TABAIMO
SANJA MATSURI
NACHI-NO-OGI MATSURI
NEBUTA MATSURI
AWA ODORI
KENDO
剣道
IAI
居合
SADO
茶道
NIHONBUYO
日本舞踊
EDOKIRIKO
江戸切子職人
SUKIYA-DAIKU
数寄屋大工
FOOD MODEL CRAFTSMAN
食品サンプル職人
SUMI-SHOKUNIN
墨職人